Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder has come under fire in recent weeks as the team has lost three of four games, including on Sunday at the Seattle Seahawks. Despite his struggles, Christopher Gates of Daily Norseman, SB Nation's Vikings blog, says that the team has no choice but to keep Ponder at quarterback.
If something doesn't change, this team is going to end the year on a 9-game losing streak and finish 5-11 after starting 5-2. Unfortunately, there really isn't a change right now that is going to make a ton of difference. No, not even benching Christian Ponder for Joe Webb. If people want to go around believe that it will, that's fine. That's their right. I disagree with it and, quite frankly, I'm through making the argument with people about it. Everyone knew this team was either going to sink or swim with Christian Ponder this season, and that's what's happening.
Gates also says that Ponder isn't the sole source of Minnesota's struggles on offense. He points to several instances on Sunday where receivers were unable to get open downfield or where the line was unable to pick up blitzes. Backup Joe Webb hasn't thrown a pass since Week 17 of last season, and third-stringer McLeod Bethel-Thompson has never appeared in an NFL game.
On the season, Ponder has thrown for 1,806 yards through nine games. He's thrown 10 touchdowns to eight interceptions, and has posted a quarterback rating of 82.0, up from 70.1 in 2011. In two of Minnesota's last three games, though, he's posted a QB rating under 40 while throwing for less than 65 yards.