The Vikings got their first taste of victory in 2013 on Sunday when they outlasted the Steelers 34-27 in London.
Win No. 1 on the year came with Matt Cassel at quarterback in place of the injured Christian Ponder. Cassel didn’t turn the ball over and was 16-of-25 for 248 yards and two touchdowns in the game. Big chunks of yards came after the catch on runs by Greg Jennings and Jerome Simpson, but Cassel was able to make plays when the Steelers crowded the box much more effectively than Ponder has in the first three weeks.
Jim Souhan of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that running back Adrian Peterson praised Cassel’s command of the huddle and answered “what do you think” to a question about whether the Vikings had found a starting quarterback. Even Ponder admitted he has to “pick up my play” after the game, but one guy isn’t willing to hand everything over to Cassel just yet.
Since that guys is coach Leslie Frazier, that may be the only voice that matters. Frazier jumped in front of the questions when he said that Ponder is the team’s starting quarterback “if you’re asking.” He later left the door open to a possible change, however, by saying that the team would “talk about a lot of things” during the bye week.
“I don’t know what I would base it on [now] other than what I’ve seen with the naked eye,” Frazier said, via Ben Goessling of ESPN.com. “I’d have to look at the tape, look at our football team and then come back and evaluate what we need to do to come back a better team. That’s what I base it on. I think it would be premature for me to say anything other than what I’m saying now.”
Two weeks is a lot of time to watch film and bat ideas around. If that were to lead to a quarterback change in Minnesota, it wouldn’t be the most surprising thing in the world.