Worse than Ponder's incompletions, however, were redzone interceptions which devastatingly ended two potential scoring drives. Minnesota's lack of passing offense hurt their running attack, limiting Adrian Peterson to zero fourth quarter touches. He had 210 yards on 21 carries, including a powerful 82-yard touchdown run in the second quarter.
Christopher Gates of SB Nation's Vikings blog, The Daily Norseman, writes that Ponder deserves full blame for Sunday's loss, and after weeks and weeks of struggle, it's becoming difficult to argue for him as the starting quarterback moving forward.
At this point, I may be the only person on the planet (outside of Samantha Steele) still supporting him. I've looked for excuses, I've looked for reasons, I've looked for glimmers of hope. . .really, I have.
And after today. . .well, I can't do it any more...It kills me to say that. . .really, it does. I wanted Ponder to be the guy that the Vikings developed for the long term and carried this team for a decade or more at the quarterback position after years of stop-gaps and temporary solutions. Part of me still wants it to happen. But, at this point, I'm just not sure it's going to be the case.
The Vikings' playoff hopes took a huge hit with the loss, as they now sit at a meager 6-6 in a strong NFC playoff picture. Next week they look to get back in the win column at home against the Chicago Bears.