Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder has not played well over the last several games. After a hot start to the season in which he led the Vikings to a 4-2 record and threw eight touchdowns and only four interceptions in six games, Ponder has struggled over the last three weeks. He was particularly bad in a loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.
Ponder was an abysmal 11-for-22 passing for 63 yards, no touchdowns and one interception in Seattle. The Vikings lost their second straight game and third in their last four, and as a result Ponder said he would not be surprised to hear some boos when returning home to Minnesota.
“It’s happened already before,” he said according to ESPN 1500. “It comes with the territory. And I don’t blame them. Obviously, we’re not — I’m not putting a product out on the field that they want to watch.”
Defensive end Jared Allen agreed, calling the Vikings’ recent performance “embarrassing.” Even in their one win in the last four weeks — a 21-14 victory over the Cardinals two weeks ago — Ponder was 8-for-17 passing for 58 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. He was previously able to lead the Vikings to success by being efficient and limiting mistakes, but the second-year quarterback has gotten nothing going in the passing game as of late.
Those of you who like blaming relationships for athletes’ poor performances can certainly blame Ponder’s stunning new girlfriend for his recent struggles. However, it would be naive to think he is the only problem. Minnesota has become a one-dimensional team and is relying too heavily on Adrian Peterson. Ponder hasn’t helped, but play-calling and preparation have certainly played a part as well.