EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. Christian Ponder returns to the scene this week, Soldier Field, where his NFL career began in earnest.
It was last October when Ponder, then a green rookie, replaced an ineffective Donovan McNabb at the start of the fourth quarter in a 39-10 loss to the Chicago Bears. Ponder was 9 of 17 for 99 yards passing in the quarter and his ascension to the starting spot was set in motion.
Now, with 20 starts under his belt as the Minnesota Vikings' present, and hopeful future, at quarterback, Ponder knows he's a different player than the raw rookie unexpectedly pushed into action.
"A lot's changed since then," Ponder said. Ponder's rollercoaster career is still going through its peaks and dives as he continues his development. In 21 career games, Ponder has shown the good and bad of a young quarterback. He owns a career 78.0 quarterback rating while completing 60 percent of his passes with 25 touchdowns to 21 interceptions. But the numbers have improved this season and...