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Leslie Frazier: I don’t see why we’d make a quarterback change

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The Vikings play on Thursday this week, which means coach Leslie Frazier won’t be able to repeat last week’s extended hemming and hawing about the identity of his starting quarterback.

Frazier moved to cut off any speculation right after Sunday’s loss to the Cowboys, saying that Christian Ponder would make a third straight start after being returned to the starting lineup in the wake of Josh Freeman’s concussion.

“As we speak, I don’t see why we would make a change,” Frazier said, via the Pioneer Press. “Sometimes after ballgames you make emotional decisions, but I don’t see anything that tells me he shouldn’t start against the Redskins.”

Ponder had what’s become a fairly typical game for him on Sunday. He was 25-of-37 for 236 yards with a touchdown and an interception while also losing a fumble that the Cowboys fell on for a touchdown in the end zone because he had so little awareness of the pass rush around him that an uninformed observer might have thought it was the first time he’d ever played a game of football. There were a few good things, a few bad things and not nearly enough to lift a flawed team to victory.

The Vikings know what Ponder is at this point and that’s why they opted for both Matt Cassel and Freeman at other points this season, but they clearly don’t think an abbreviated week is enough time to get Freeman ready for a second chance at the big job.

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43 Responses to “Leslie Frazier: I don’t see why we’d make a quarterback change”
  1. ad2k13 says: Nov 4, 2013 7:14 AM

    Joe Mauer deserves the start on Thursday night.

  2. packerenglishmajor says: Nov 4, 2013 7:14 AM

    Leslie is right we need a coaching change.

    There is so much to fix, just don’t let Spielman fix it.

  3. logicalvoicesays says: Nov 4, 2013 7:15 AM

    Good. It will make the task much easier this Thursday for the good guys from DC. Ponder is a mediocre player. #weshouldwinby28

  4. newyorkshets says: Nov 4, 2013 7:18 AM

    Frazier is so clueless it isn’t even funny anymore. Seriously how do you still have a job in the NFL?

  5. hanklee1989 says: Nov 4, 2013 7:24 AM

    I love my Vikings, and Ponder is toast come January, but to pin him with the blame on the sack-fumble-TD for Dallas is asinine.

    Patterson fumbled the kick return out of bounds at the 5 yard line, and then rather than handing it to Adrian, Bill called some goofy playaction knowing Dallas was going to bring the house to make a big play. Then our backup right tackle got undressed by Everette Brown (Yes, THAT E. Brown Carolina fans), and Ponder got smoked.

    I blame Ponder for not making a change at the line into a safer play, that’s clearly on him for not having the awareness to read the defense. Once the ball is snapped, ANY protection would have been better than what he got

  6. thegonz13 says: Nov 4, 2013 7:29 AM

    Here’s a valid reason: Ponder’s no good!

  7. bkunza says: Nov 4, 2013 7:35 AM

    Every week Frazier says something that just makes you scratch your head. On the fumble in the end zone Ponder had plenty of time to step up into the pocket and held the ball extremely low. He has a very week arm as you could see on the “Hail Mary” at the end of the game, the ball fell about 8 yards short of the end zone. Frazier needs to go away and take Ponder and our GM with him.

  8. packfntk says: Nov 4, 2013 7:38 AM

    What a nasty situation.

  9. thegrey7 says: Nov 4, 2013 7:39 AM

    “Ponder had what’s become a fairly typical game for him on Sunday.” — That wasn’t a typical game for Ponder. It was a good game for him, and a slightly below average game for most other QBs. Also, they were playing the worst pass defense in the NFL.

  10. f1restarter says: Nov 4, 2013 7:49 AM

    “I don’t see why we would make a change,” Frazier said…
    As a Packers fan, I don’t either. SKOL! FEAR THE NOODLE!

  11. ccjcsr says: Nov 4, 2013 7:50 AM


  12. filthymcnasty1 says: Nov 4, 2013 8:03 AM

    I enjoyed watching that noodle armed Ponder chick’s Hail Mary pass fall harmlessly short of the end zone.

    Viking fans assured us he’d be fine once he got some receivers. Whatever happened to all those Ponder apologists? Too funny.

  13. koncreat says: Nov 4, 2013 8:06 AM

    I agree. They will lose no matter who starts at QB.

  14. coachkilla6 says: Nov 4, 2013 8:11 AM

    In Frazier’s defense, he probably hasn’t seen the game film yet…or any game film…ever.

  15. gettingzygiwithit says: Nov 4, 2013 8:16 AM

    Ponder has gotten too much blame, and it continues here. He gave the Vikes a chance to win, again. And the defense couldn’t do their part late. The fumble was on the replacement RT Webb, not on Ponder, to take a sack in the end zone. The Vikes are built to win close games, as Frazier has always said. He’s a defensive minded coach with a terrible defense, and that’s why they’re losing games.

  16. fwippel says: Nov 4, 2013 8:17 AM

    Sheesh! I wouldn’t be so hard on Ponder about his awareness. It’s not the Viking offensive line is any good when it comes to pass blocking. Besides, with JaMarcus Webb in there instead of Phil Loadholdt, that Dallas lineman basically came in unblocked. Not a smart play call in that situation, especially with that being Webb’s first play in the game.

    The main reason Ponder has been starting recently is because he’s the only Viking QB with the mobility to run away from the pass rush. Cassel was a sitting duck back there, and Freeman looked like he couldn’t hit the side of a hay barn from 20 yards away.

  17. pats4win says: Nov 4, 2013 8:27 AM

    The Bucs might be a off kilter this year because of Schiano, but that’s doesn’t mean he doesn’t know how to evaluate talent.

    There was a reason why he dumped Freeman – the guy can’t play. I don’t know if he’s just lazy and doesn’t study or whatever, but after his first season he just lost it.

    Freeman isn’t the answer in Minnesota. Cassel was broken as a qb by Haley. Run either one this year – there isn’t much difference between the two (personally Cassel would be my choice but meh, 6 or one half dozen on that call) and then go for broke trying to land a high quality qb in the draft.

  18. TBaySlim says: Nov 4, 2013 8:29 AM

    I dunno coach maybe because you lost again, maybe because ponder made the same mistakes over and over, maybe because i dunno, he is the only quarterback in the NFL that cant throw a 50 yrd ball in the air. I am willing to be they’re were people in the stands, that could throw the ball 50 yards in the air, but yet you remain steadfast on ponder, keep starting him that top 3 pick will be ours, and I dont why we’d keep you as a coach

  19. johnnyjagfan says: Nov 4, 2013 8:31 AM

    At this point, Frazier is losing credibility. What happened to “Josh Freeman will get every chance to prove that he can be the QB of this team”? He got thrown to the wolves (ok, maybe not wolves) on MNF with no clue how to run the offense, then somehow got a concussion and now isn’t going to play?

  20. northshorejag says: Nov 4, 2013 8:31 AM


  21. ammarradhi says: Nov 4, 2013 8:32 AM

    Definition of insanity

  22. joetoronto says: Nov 4, 2013 8:36 AM

    Everybody relax, he had his eyes closed when said it.

  23. phukurmouf says: Nov 4, 2013 8:38 AM

    In other words Minnehaha wants the #1 overall pick in April!

  24. FinFan68 says: Nov 4, 2013 8:41 AM

    Josh just seems too lazy to do what is necessary to learn the new system quickly. It’s been over a month. That’s long enough. QBs start with much less prep time every year. Buffalo has been pulling guys off the street this year and they are playing OK. It’s Freeman. Sorry folks, but it looks like Schiano was right.

  25. conormacleod says: Nov 4, 2013 8:49 AM

    A coach change would help to win those close games.

  26. godofwine330 says: Nov 4, 2013 8:51 AM

    @ Alper, “losing a fumble that the Cowboys fell on for a touchdown in the end zone because he had so little awareness of the pass rush around him that an uninformed observer might have thought it was the first time he’d ever played a game of football.”

    That was deep. I mean, that cut deep. True, but deep. I think the Vikings made a mistake when they put Freeman in a couple of weeks ago and would have served better putting him in now than then. Playing after being on the team a week or two isn’t good for a QB. Now, after how Freeman looked you don’t know when he actually got the concussion in the game to even gauge his performance so you can see what you have.

  27. vavikingfan says: Nov 4, 2013 9:01 AM

    Freeman was inactive on Sunday. Matt Cassel has to wonder what he got himself into; by Ponder standards this was a great game ; he played to a high school level.

  28. Carl Gerbschmidt says: Nov 4, 2013 9:11 AM

    I think Christian is improving nicely. Just give him this year to figure it out.

  29. Rick Spielman is a Magician says: Nov 4, 2013 9:53 AM

    Has anyone noticed that the Timberwolves are 3-0, the Gophers are 7-2, and the Lynx won the world championship?

  30. jimthebuilder27 says: Nov 4, 2013 9:53 AM

    Vikes should play in London more! They’re undefeated there!

  31. sillec28 says: Nov 4, 2013 10:23 AM

    As a Bucs fan (yes, there still are a few of us) I can tell the Vikings that they’re delusional if they think Freeman is going to be any good. He’s a guy who looks like he should be a great QB – good size, strong arm, decent mobility – but who actually stinks much of the time.

  32. filthymcnasty1 says: Nov 4, 2013 10:25 AM

    Does 1-7 fully qualify as both hapless and tasteless?

  33. coachkilla6 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:35 AM

    All joking aside, I’ve seen 12-yr olds in Punt, Pass, and Kick competitions throw the ball further than Ponder. That includes the girls.

  34. dragonfly99 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:36 AM

    I don’t see why they would make a change either, especially if they goal is to get a top three draft pick. Which I believe is the goal of Frazier and Spielman. They must feel very secure that the Wilfs won’t take any action and they will both be around next year.

  35. davebarker570 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:54 AM

    We spent 2M to bring in Freeman to see what he has. This season is lost. Put in freeman so we can see if we can use him next year when he comes up on contract. Otherwise why did we bring him here in the first place?

  36. FlashPatterson says: Nov 4, 2013 12:15 PM

    hanklee1989 says:
    Nov 4, 2013 7:24 AM
    I love my Vikings, and Ponder is toast come January, but to pin him with the blame on the sack-fumble-TD for Dallas is asinine.
    Just don’t talk anymore. It was half his fault and half Musgrave’s fault. How do you drop that qb back into the endzone to pass the ball? He knows Ponder can’t feel the Defense, he knows our oline is awful, and we have a runningback who can break any play for a td.

  37. mack2x says: Nov 4, 2013 1:13 PM

    If I was Ziggy, This guy would be making his expensive, emotional decisions somewhere else next year.

  38. ejmat2 says: Nov 4, 2013 1:29 PM

    Well let me think here Leslie. The fact everyone on earth except for maybe you know that Ponder is not the QB of the future. The fact that we don’t really know what we have with Freeman unless he plays. Just two significant reasons off the top of my head. Any more questions Leslie?

    The real question is why on earth are you still the head coach?

  39. 97tahoe says: Nov 4, 2013 1:37 PM

    And this is why you will likely be out of a job in 8 weeks.

  40. lpd1964 says: Nov 4, 2013 2:55 PM

    The Timberwolves are more interesting than the Vikings-Ponder hasn’t progressed since draft day, it’s been posted and I agree, Ponder continues to make the same mistakes over and over-where are the corrections Frazier continues to harp on and says are coming?

  41. whatjusthapped says: Nov 4, 2013 3:51 PM

    Ponder is starting again? He must have naked pictures of Frazier in a dog collar because rationally, Ponder should be out of the league, not under center.

    Cassel’s the only one to win a game this year so he must be wondering what he has to do to see the field. He’s not much of an improvement but I bet he can heave the ball 50 yards on a Hail Mary pass, something missing from Ponder’s skill set.

  42. codyjwertz says: Nov 4, 2013 5:26 PM

    I am NOT a Ponder fan by any means at this point. But I feel he does deserve the start against the Redskins. I think they need to continue with the no-huddle offense sine it (somehow) worked last week. He didn’t have a spectacular game by any means, but he had a “ponder level” good game. I wasn’t a huge fan of s starting him last week, but it worked out to an extent

  43. teamnorsecore says: Nov 4, 2013 5:47 PM

    Good to see the usual Packer “fans” are still so interested in a 1-7 team.

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