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Friday (Vikings shouldn't restrict Ponder) edition: Wha' Happened?

  • Blog Post by: Michael Rand
  • September 2, 2011 - 9:41 AM

Football is a violent game. Christian Ponder is a valuable investment -- the Vikings are betting big on him as their long-term solution at quarterback, and he obviously does them no good if he is injured.

That said, he also does them absolutely no good if he is playing tentative or against the grain of his intuition. He did not play at all that way last night, giving the purple faithful confidence that he could have a bright future in the league. He was fairly poised in the pocket, especially as the game went on. And perhaps more surprisingly to some, he took off running 8 times for 61 yards.

That, however, meant we had the requisite question asked of Leslie Frazier regarding whether he wants his rookie QB taking off running like that in the big, scary NFL. Frazier's answer? It passed the test pretty well, just like Ponder:

"You don't want him out there running too much, but you got to let him play," Frazier said. "He has the athletic ability to make plays outside the pocket. You don't want to take that away from him, but in our league when your quarterback is on the run, it does make you hold your breath sometimes."

Indeed. The Vikings don't need (another?) head coach who builds fences around players. They need one who realizes that injuries are often a fluke -- who's to say you aren't more likely to get blasted in the leg, shoulder or head in the pocket as opposed to on the run -- and that you shouldn't try to unreasonably rein in the skills that make a QB successful.

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