Hartman: Fan and media criticism doesn't bother Vikings' Ponder

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 15, 2013 - 12:03 AM
hide

Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder, warming up before last week’s season-opening loss at Detroit, said of the criticism directed at him following that performance: “I don’t know what’s being said, and I couldn’t care less.”

Photo: JERRY HOLT • jgholt@startribune.com,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

It’s amazing to see the amount of criticism directed at Christian Ponder from fans and the media alike. The 25-year-old, who last season became the second-youngest starting quarterback in Vikings history to take the team to the playoffs (behind Daunte Culpepper), already has people calling for him to be replaced following the season-opening 34-24 loss at Detroit last week.

But the Florida State product said that if he is going to have success, he cannot do anything other than ignore the newspapers and what people outside the team have to say about his play.

“I don’t read it, so I’m focused on my job and that’s to keep getting better and improve as a football team and lead this team to some wins and hopefully the playoffs,” Ponder said. “I don’t know what’s being said, and I couldn’t care less.”

Last season was unquestionably an up-and-down one for Ponder in his first opportunity to be the starter for a full season. He posted four starts with a quarterback rating above 100, but he also had five games with a quarterback rating below 60.

But he said after watching the film from Week 1 that he saw improvement over his play from last year.

“There were a lot of good things [in the Detroit] game,” Ponder said. “The turnovers were unfortunate, obviously things that are easily correctable — things that I don’t think I made bad decisions, it’s just things were unfortunate. “

Ponder finished last week completing 18 of 28 passes for 236 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions for a QB rating of 63.1. Still Ponder’s 8.43 passing yards per attempt was the second-highest single-game total of his career.

Going forward

Ponder was asked how his confidence is following the 0-1 start to the season.

“Confidence is great, my confidence is not affected,” he said. “I know that there were a lot of good things in that game.”

Ponder also said that even difficult losses like Detroit give him something to learn from.

“I mean, the more experience you get the better you become,” he said. “I learn from every situation that I go through, good or bad. I think with anybody the more experience you get, the game slows down, you become a better player.”

He added that Sunday’s game at Chicago won’t be any easier.

“You know it’s a tough division,” he said about starting off against two NFC North opponents. “But it’s a competitive division and it’s fun to play in.

“[Chicago’s fans will] be tough, they’ll be loud. It’s a fun place to play. They definitely have home-field advantage and we’ll learn to deal with it.”

Does he feel any pressure in trying to keep the Vikings from starting out 0-2?

“We understand that there are going to be losses in this season and we don’t want to be 0-2, obviously you want to win this one and keep moving forward,” Ponder said. “But we’re going to do the best that we can and not worry about the outcome — it’s about the process.

“I’m a lot more comfortable and confident in what I’m doing, and I think everyone in this offense is. We are a better offense than we were last year.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Oakland - LP: D. Otero 8 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: J. Frasor 9
Minnesota 10/2/14 7:25 PM
Green Bay
Buffalo 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Chicago 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Cleveland 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
St. Louis 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Atlanta 10/5/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Tampa Bay 10/5/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Houston 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Dallas
Baltimore 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Indianapolis
Pittsburgh 10/5/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Arizona 10/5/14 3:05 PM
Denver
Kansas City 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
NY Jets 10/5/14 3:25 PM
San Diego
Cincinnati 10/5/14 7:30 PM
New England
Seattle 10/6/14 7:30 PM
Washington
NY Islanders 5 FINAL
Boston 3
NY Rangers 2 FINAL
Philadelphia 4
Ottawa 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 2
Carolina 1 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Tampa Bay 5 FINAL
Dallas 1
Colorado 0 FINAL
Calgary 2
Los Angeles 4 FINAL
San Jose 1
Fla Atlantic 10/2/14 6:00 PM
FIU
UCF 10/2/14 6:00 PM
Houston
Arizona 10/2/14 9:30 PM
(2) Oregon
Louisville 10/3/14 6:00 PM
Syracuse
San Diego St 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Utah State 10/3/14 9:15 PM
(18) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(12) Miss State
Ball State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Army
Iowa State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(21) Oklahoma State
Marshall 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Old Dominion
Southern Miss 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Middle Tennessee
(20) Ohio State 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Maryland
Purdue 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Florida 10/4/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
SMU 10/4/14 11:00 AM
(22) East Carolina
Virginia Tech 10/4/14 11:30 AM
North Carolina
Eastern Mich 10/4/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Texas 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Indiana
Massachusetts 10/4/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Tulsa 10/4/14 2:00 PM
Colorado State
New Mexico 10/4/14 2:30 PM
TX-San Antonio
(3) Alabama 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(11) Ole Miss
(14) Stanford 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(9) Notre Dame
(17) Wisconsin 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Navy 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Air Force
(7) Baylor 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Texas
(4) Oklahoma 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(25) TCU
Wake Forest 10/4/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State
NC State 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Clemson
Buffalo 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Bowling Green
Ohio U 10/4/14 2:30 PM
Central Mich
Oregon State 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Colorado
Vanderbilt 10/4/14 3:00 PM
(13) Georgia
Kansas 10/4/14 3:00 PM
West Virginia
Kent State 10/4/14 4:00 PM
Northern Ill
South Alabama 10/4/14 5:00 PM
Appalachian St
Texas-El Paso 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
(15) LSU 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(5) Auburn
UAB 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Ky
Texas Tech 10/4/14 6:00 PM
(23) Kansas State
Michigan 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Rutgers
Hawaii 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Rice
Toledo 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Western Mich
ULM 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Georgia State 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
Idaho 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Texas State
Memphis 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Arizona State 10/4/14 6:30 PM
(16) USC
So Carolina 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Kentucky
Pittsburgh 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Virginia
Miami-Florida 10/4/14 6:30 PM
Georgia Tech
(19) Nebraska 10/4/14 7:00 PM
(10) Michigan State
UNLV 10/4/14 7:00 PM
San Jose St
Ga Southern 10/4/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
Utah 10/4/14 9:30 PM
(8) UCLA
Boise State 10/4/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Winnipeg 10/3/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 10/3/14 9:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Edmonton 10/4/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/4/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Vikings do against Atlanta?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close