Our colleague Mark Craig had a story over the weekend about what some Vikings players are doing during the lockout. A group of veterans, including offensive linemen Steve Hutchinson, John Sullivan and tight end Jim Kleinsasser -- are working out together in the Twin Cities four days a week.

Rookie quarterback Christian Ponder told KFAN's Paul Allen in an interview Tuesday that he hopes to join them at some point.

"Chad Greenway had mentioned coming up there and doing some stuff up there," Ponder said. "I think that’s important for me to get up there. The biggest problem right now is that I don’t have any money. [laughing] The plan is to get up there some time and find somewhere to live. But with a lockout I’m not getting paid. But I know at some point I’ll get up there and spend some time with those guys."

Ponder continues to train at the IMG Madden Football Academy in Florida with instructor/quarterback coach Chris Weinke. Ponder had a few other interesting nuggets in his interview with Allen.

Ponder was asked how his right arm feels. Remember, he had some arm problems his final two seasons at Florida State.

"It feels great," he said. "Actually me and Chris have done some things – he’s fixed some things in my mechanics and I’m throwing the ball extremely well. That’s one thing why I’m excited for the season to get started so I can get back out there and really play."

Ponder was asked if he believes the lingering lockout is hurting his chances of becoming the team's starting quarterback in the season opener. The lockout has wiped out OTAs and minicamps, costing Ponder valuable learning time.

"I definitely don’t think it’s helping me," he said. "I need as much time and practice as I can get. It’s good what I’m doing now. But it’s completely different when you’re going against defenses and you’re getting coaching from Coach Musgrave [offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave] and being with your teammates. I definitely don’t think it’s helping me."


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