Vikings not exercising fifth-year option on Christian Ponder


The Vikings appear poised to let Christian Ponder play out the final year of his contract in 2014.

According to multiple published reports, the Vikings will not exercise their fifth-year option on Ponder, their No. 1 pick in 2011. PFT’s Mike Florio has confirmed Minnesota will not pick up Ponder’s option.

The Vikings are one of the leading candidates to add a quarterback in next week’s draft. The club also re-signed Matt Cassel, who finished the season as the starter. The Vikings were 3-2 in December, with Cassel starting or playing significant snaps in all three wins.

The 26-year-old Ponder threw for 1,648 yards with seven TD passes and nine interceptions in nine starts for Minnesota in 2013. He missed time with rib and shoulder injuries, as well as a concussion. However, he did not return to the lineup after being medically cleared of his concussion with three games left in the season.

The collective bargaining agreement between NFL owners and players allows teams to tender first-round picks a fifth-year contract after their third seasons.

68 responses to “Vikings not exercising fifth-year option on Christian Ponder

  1. The historic Minnesota Vikings are ten steps ahead of your favorite franchise.

    After dominating free agency by getting the best value players in the whole NFL while they’re in their prime for amazingly cheap contracts, we filled our team with much needed building blocks that we won’t have to fix in the draft.

    After we draft our franchise QB (Bridgewater or Manziel) and then trade up for C.J Mosely in the end of the first round.

    We will officially have the best roster in the entire NFL

    We win. And 18 division titles speak for itself.

  2. If Matt Cassell is an improvement for your team at QB, you’ve got problems…

  3. Well duh. Teddy Bridgewater is gonna have the starting job, and Matt Cassel is a…. capable…. backup. So where does that leave Ponder? On his couch, where he belongs.

  4. The Vikings roster is better than the Packers in almost every single position.


    Better RB’s – Vikings
    Better WR’s – Tied
    Better Offense Line – Vikings
    Better Tight Ends – Vikings
    Better Full Back – Vikings
    Better QB – Packers

    Now Defense:

    Better Safeties – Vikings
    Better Linebackers – Vikings
    Better Cornerbacks – Packers
    Better Defensive Ends – Vikings
    Better Def. Tackles – Vikings

    The Vikings are better than the Packers in every category except 2, therefore making us a more talented roster…

    Case Closed ( )

  5. His wife is just so hot, he’s already won. Can’t wait to hear what every Vikings fan has to say about this… Where are those 3 guys anyway?

  6. Hallelujah! Time to close the books on the Ponder error… et, era! This guy was a major reach and even I -a Vikings fan for the past four decades- have wondered was the hell was the team thinking.

    Hopefully, the Vikings will do their due diligence this time around.

  7. Ponders a good man and needs good coaching. I bet he will succeed. You all expect every draft to be in the SB because of a 1st rd pick, yet only one gets in the SB and not every year. Ponder has had the bad luck of bad coaching. I would like to see him thrive with a good coaching staff. Remember, Brad Johnson or Rich Gannon and there are a few others. The only thing that changed with those guys are the coaching. Of course after we let them go. Good luck CP7 Skol Vikings!!!!

  8. Ponder reminds me a lot of the David Carr situation, drafted higher than he ever should have been, stuck on a team devoid of talent and expect to deliver wins and then blamed when they don’t.

    The biggest difference is that Carr could at least throw the ball, Ponder throws with the velocity of a girl. The second biggest difference is that Carr was drafted by a NFL team, Ponder was drafted by Vikings.

  9. This actually does shock me.

    At least he’s not past his prime like 28.

    This guy actually has room to grow, while the running back has to wonder where his window went.

  10. Not to worry. The Vikings are sure to waste yet another top ten draft pick on another bust of a QB. It’s why they will always finish last and why they cannot beat the Packers.

  11. Either Bortles or Manziel will be a Viking. Question becomes which one if both are there. My guess is Spielman plays it safe and takes Bortles, and he sits behind Cassel.

  12. thepftpoet says: May 3, 2014 3:54 PM

    The Vikings roster is better than the Packers in almost every single position.


    Better RB’s – Vikings
    Better WR’s – Tied
    Better Offense Line – Vikings
    Better Tight Ends – Vikings
    Better Full Back – Vikings
    Better QB – Packers

    Now Defense:

    Better Safeties – Vikings
    Better Linebackers – Vikings
    Better Cornerbacks – Packers
    Better Defensive Ends – Vikings
    Better Def. Tackles – Vikings

    The Vikings are better than the Packers in every category except 2, therefore making us a more talented roster…

    Better WRs = Tied? HAHAHAHA. Greg Jennings, your $9 mil per year, best WR…. was outperformed by Jarrett Boykin, an undrafted street free agent, cut by the JAGUARS, who was the fourth WR on our depth chart.

    (And before any ignorant trolls come in to say “Yeah, well look at who was throwing them the ball”….. most of Boykin’s production came in games where it was Seneca Wallace/Scott Tolzien/Matt Flynn at QB)

    “Tied.” LOL.

    And for having better players at every defensive position other than cornerback, it is a little strange that the Vikings defense was demonstrably worse than the Packers in nearly every category, and the Vikings just lost their best defensive player. …. How does that work again?

  13. I do believe ponder can do better with better coaching. Hes got a longggg way to go and its highly unlikely he will be the starting qb by the time the new stadium rolls around. I like him as a backup because hes familiar with this team. I think matt cassel will be the Vikings guy this year. And im fine with that cause its not very often an entire new coaching staff and totally revamped team makes the playoffs and goes far. So We can wait another year for a sure thing qb. And this year in the nfc north its gonna be very competitive and you might see a winning record team miss out on the playoffs. Im hoping we dont take a qb at number 8 unless its Manziel. Manziel wont be ready wk 1 but we could try him out in the 2nd half of the season, ease him in.

  14. 2 steps ahead of your team? What’s in the water in Minnesota?
    We have a ring, the top rated defense, stud qb, awesome rb, and best secondary currently.
    Care to compare stadiums or trophy cases?

  15. thepftpoet says: May 3, 2014 3:49 PM

    The hysteric Minnesota Vikings are ten steps behind your favorite franchise.

    After being dominated in free agency by getting the worst players in the whole NFL while they’re in jail for amazingly cheap tricks, we filled our team with much needed building blocks of lard that we won’t have to fit in the door.

    After we draft another Ponder (Bridgewater) and then trade up for Mr.Irrelevant in the end of the first round.

    We will officially have the worst roster in the entire NFL

    We lose. And No Superbowls speaks for itself.

  16. Has anyone ever noticed you never see a photograph of Thepftpoet and Logicalvoicesays together? Clark Troll and Supertroll!

  17. To every talkin about the Vikings finishing last. Once upon a time the packers failed to win the NFC North from 1973 to 1995… very hapless and tasteless and almost kicked out of the NFC North. And Very laughable.

  18. I’ve been a long time Vikes fan but PFTpoet is trippn. I love the enthusiasm. However, division titles are just piles of dung left to bleach in the sun gleaming off of other teams Lombardi trophies. SKOL Vikings.

  19. The Vikings management of quarterbacks, especially last year, should go into a short pamphlet distributed to all football personnel at every level in this country, and it should be titled, ‘the proven path to quarterback failure’

    Having ponder still on the roster and giving cassel a big contract only proves to me that this team is managed by people who do not understand anything about quarterbacks. Any manager with the most passive experience with the nfl would know that the Vikings have nothing but dead weight at that position. If spielman drafts a quarterback in the first or second round this year, it is proof he should be fired. I feel sorry for whoever that quarterback is because he will be put in the musical chairs of Vikings quarterbacks. The Vikings will start one guy for two or three games then another guy then another guy then another…and it just goes to the septic tank. He will be doomed to fail because of how stupid they handle quarterbacks.

  20. filthymcnasty1 says: May 3, 2014 5:23 PM

    I remember back when the Vikings had better RB’s than the Packers.
    Shouldn’t be too difficult. It’s been pretty much forever. Unless something tragic just happed to AP in the last few minutes, the Vikes still have better running backs than GB.

  21. If you think the Vikings have the worst roster you dont watch or follow the nfl. Anytime you have the best running on your team you will not have the worst roster. Solid players all around the team. Heres a list starting on offense of who I think are solid. Matt Kalil. John Sullivan. Brandon Fusco.Phil Loadholt. Kyle Rudolph. Greg Jennings. Cordarrelle Patterson. Jerome Simpson. Jarius Wright. Jerome Felton. And your star Adrian Peterson. Kalil, sully. Jennings and Peterson are all A’s. rest are B’s and a few of them are not far behind an A grade. Jarius Wright falls just short of a B but is still solid for his athleticism. John carlson in my mind is a C+ as well.

    Defensive side here are my solid players. Brian Robison. Everson griffin. Shariff Floyd. Linval Joseph. Chad Greenway. Xavier Rhodes. Captain Munnerlyn. Josh Robison (for his athleticism) Harrison Smith. I peg most those guys at a B grade. Harrison and munnerlynn and Robison are a B+ And a lot of pieces will still be added to this defense with zimmer at the helm. Offensive starters are set. Minus the qb. And defense definitely will be upgraded throughout the rest of the off season. We need another starting S and MLB and OLB and another CB.

    Thats a pretty good roster if you ask me.

  22. Growing up in Iowa two things were for sure! Winters are horrible and the Vikings will always lose the big one. The last time was dubbed Who Dat! Lol
    Relocated to Seattle for mild weather and a Lombardi. Lol

  23. The coaching is what made us finish last 3 out of the last 4 years and very inconsistent and poor qb play. If you dont have a consistent qb in this league and your team plays in one of the best divisions, you will finish last. Vikes will be better this year even when there was no qb market and its because we actually will have a good coaching staff.

  24. The reason why ponder and cassel are still on the roster tainted, is because the market for qbs sucked this year. And qbs in the draft are questionable. If you think you can manage qbs better than the Vikings staff then go ahead and walk yourself down to winter park and apply for the job. No? Yeah I didnt think so.

    The vikings must take Manziel if hes there at 8. Or take a qb later. One of these rookie qbs will work out. There’s no way all of them wont make it at the NFL level. I think manziel will be gone at 8 and they take barr mack or mosley or one of the cornerbacks at 8.

  25. Hey Filthy, Adrian Peterson has more rushing yards than any back in Packer history. When you have a back that has rushed for over 10,000 yards get back to me. Also, with Ponder, he beat the Packers.

  26. Yes – The Vikings, as is often the case, are undefeated during the offseason, and look poised to win their first ever NFL Championship. Their optimistic fans continue to wax POETic about their superiority. Unfortunately, once real football begins: Somebody Keeps On Losing – SKOL

  27. GM Spielman should’ve lost his job with L. Frazier after the season ended. I criticized the move at the time just as I criticized my Saints for getting M. Ingram.

  28. I come from the UK and I seem to know football better than the trolls on here. Packers and vikings trolls you’re not sounding like adults, go back to the playground and let adults talk football, that’s you prophet and mcnasty

  29. That big whooshing sound we all just heard was the collective sigh of relief from all Vikings fans everywhere upon hearing that they weren’t taking the option on Ponder.

  30. Despite how much respect I have for Adrian Petersen – right now – straight up – Id take Eddie Lacy over AP – as much upside in the short term, more upside for the longer term. There’s cause for optimism in Packerland this year, a healthy Aaron Rodgers, with a starting quality offensive line combining a truly threatening run game and an ever dyanmic passing game is very exciting. Now we need a few solid draft picks, and dare I say, some good fortune on the injury front, and the Pack looks poised to not only compete for the NFC North title, but perhaps to take the next step in the playoffs.

  31. Gee, Ponders had trouble adjusting to pro ball so far, hmmm how long did it take Bree’s to figure it out. What ever happened to having some patience . Is it possible he starts to come around and be the talent the Vickings thought he could become. Mind you I’m not even a Vickings fan . Just a thought

  32. Vikings need an identity, I thought they were all about the run, then they pass 50+ with Josh Freeman, I mean JOSH FREEMAN

  33. Ponder and Locker were real head scratchers. To think that real GMs being paid real money for these picks boggles the mind.

    I know for a fact that I could build a better team than AT LEAST a third of the current GMs. Seriously.

  34. I am a huge Minnesota Vikings fan and even I will agree that some of the Vikings fan’s comments are a little bone headed. We have an impressive history but in the past 15 years I havent seen much put on display to brag about other than Favre’s awesome year. I am sure every fan base has their share of obnoxious fan’s, but it’d be nice to seem some Vikes fans eat some humble pie and hope for a successful draft and a respectable season rather than declare us the best roster in the NFL and the most impressive franchise because we are not.

  35. considering Tavaris Jackson, Daunte Fumblepepper, ponder, gus ferret and all the rest of the misfits over the last 20 years – its a wonder the vikes can ever make the playoffs. Vikes had two qbs in two decades -Rich Gannon and that guy who won a superbowl in tampa bay …and the vikes gave them both away for nothing. Between Campbell soup guy and drug addict last year from tampa —its just despicable these gm’s last as long as they do.

  36. Ponder was a QB from a backwater college and they expected him to do great – central florida state or some kackomaney place. To give a first round draft pick on that peace of work. I mean Geezzeee. They would be better off taking an entire draft or at least the first 3-4 rounds and bringing them all in to camp and let them duke it out to see which one can actually play.

  37. This guy is a journeyman back up after this coming season, i forget who said it, but an analyst once said he just never saw that fire to win in Ponders eyes. He was a bad/wasted pick…. BUST

  38. New England should offer Ryan Mallett up to the Vikings since hes better then any quarterback on there roster. Minnesotta Vikings Superbowl Champs oh wait they’ve never won one

  39. To every talkin about the Vikings finishing last. Once upon a time the packers failed to win the NFC North from 1973 to 1995… very hapless and tasteless and almost kicked out of the NFC North. And Very laughable.”

    The NFC north did not exist until 1998.

  40. Speilman is good gm. He makes moves and brings in talent via draft. He panicked on one pick (ponder). Granted every vikings fan knew he was a bust before he eventually stepped on the field

  41. This is a big mistake. We need to sign Christian Ponder to a long term deal and secure it now while he’ll be cheap.

    They are rushing to judgment, with another 4-7 years Ponder will really start to grasp an NFL offense. Give him more time!


  42. Sometimes all bad things must come to an end too.

    Ponder still beat Green Bay hahahha WOW!

  43. I’m no expert. But the only QB I see worth drafting in the top 10 is Bortles. If the Browns take Manziel at #4, they will continue to be the Factory of Sadness. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Texans trade with the Rams. They need a QB. Any pick in the draft is a gamble. And the Rams won’t have to part ways with much trading up one spot for Clowney. Even though draft picks are Golden.

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