Donovan McNabb was benched in favor of Christian Ponder in the Vikings’ loss to the Bears on Sunday night, but McNabb doesn’t think it was a permanent decision.
“I don’t see it ending like this,” McNabb said. “But it’s tough. You’re 1-5 at this particular point. I felt like we did a lot of great things [Sunday]. But I guess we’ll sit down to talk, but I still expect to be in there next week.”
I don’t know too many people who would agree with McNabb that the Vikings “did a lot of great things” in their 39-10 loss to the Bears. McNabb was far from the only reason the Vikings lost, but he didn’t do a lot to help them win, either.
So is McNabb right that he’s still the starter? Vikings coach Leslie Frazier wouldn’t commit to that.
“We’re going sit down on Monday and just talk about a lot of things and just decide on what direction we want to go,” Frazier said.
For his part, Ponder looked like, well, a young Donovan McNabb, showing off good mobility and good pocket awareness but missing some throws. He finished 9-of-17 for 99 yards, and he didn’t have any turnovers. He said afterward that he wasn’t sure if he’ll be back on the field next week against the Packers.
“I don’t know,” Ponder said. “Who knows? I know I missed a couple plays, made a couple plays. But that’s not my call. That’s always Coach’s call, and Donovan didn’t have a bad game this game either. But who knows? We’ll see.”
The bottom line is that McNabb isn’t getting the job done, and the Vikings need to see what they have in Ponder. If Frazier isn’t going to declare Ponder the starter effective immediately, the only reason that would make sense is that Frazier doesn’t want to throw Ponder to the wolves with the Vikings set to play the best team in the league on Sunday. But sooner rather than later, McNabb needs to be sent to the bench permanently.