Vikings coach Leslie Frazier did not name a starting quarterback for Sunday’s game in Dallas, but he eliminated one of three candidates. Frazier said Monday either Josh Freeman or Christian Ponder would start, which leaves Matt Cassel out of the mix.
“[We’re] just trying to look at the whole picture and who will gives us the best chance to win from our standpoint as coaches,” Frazier said. “That’s what it’ll be based on. The other factors will be what the health of the other guys are, but primarily: Who do you think will give you the best chance in this ballgame against Dallas?”
Ponder played in Sunday night’s 44-31 loss to Green Bay at the Metrodome, completing 14 of 21 passes for 145 yards. He ran for 38 yards and a late touchdown.
Freeman, who started Oct. 21 against the Giants, dealt with concussion-like symptoms last week. Freeman, cleared to play Friday, was inactive Sunday but said he ran Saturday without any side effects.
“With this league, you really don’t know what to expect,” Freeman said on the quarterback situation. “I know that Christian and Matt are fierce competitors as well. I’m just going to continue to try to get ready myself and being in the best playing shape I can be.”
Said Frazier: “Christian did some good things in that ballgame yesterday. Obviously there are things he could do better, but that has something to do with it. He has led us to some wins in the past. Josh, we brought him in to evaluate and if he could be a guy that could be a potential player for us in the future.”
Cassel started in the Vikings’ only victory, 34-27 over Pittsburghs on Sept. 29 in London. He also started after the bye week in a 35-10 loss to Carolina before he was inactive against the Giants.
“He’s done everything we’ve asked him to,” Frazier said of Cassel. “He’s practiced well, prepared well. He was ready yesterday if needed be, and he’ll continue to work as hard he can. I don’t know if there’s any one thing I can point to and say why it’s Christian and Josh in this determination.”
No impact for Jennings
Greg Jennings left the Packers after last season to sign a five-year, $45 million contract with the Vikings that included $18 million guaranteed.
The veteran receiver played 38 of the team’s 47 offensive snaps Sunday but finished with only one reception for 9 yards. Through seven games, Jennings has 25 catches for 336 yards and two touchdowns in a passing offense that ranks 28th in the NFL, averaging 202.6 yards per game.
Frazier said he doesn’t need to say much to Jennings about frustration.
“He is an outstanding young man and a true team guy,” Frazier said. “He came up to me after the ballgame last night and just a classy, classy guy. Just his approach and his words of encouragement, I don’t know if we have to do anything to pacify him. He’s the ultimate team guy and wants to do whatever he can to help our team win, period.”
Cordarrelle Patterson (two) and Jerome Simpson (one) had the only other receptions by wide receivers. Patterson had the longest kickoff return in NFL history, going 109 yards, but was on the field for only 15 offensive plays. Receiver Joe Webb, who wasn’t targeted at all in the game, was on the field for 16.
The Vikings had two more injuries to defensive backs Sunday.
Safety Jamarca Sanford left because of a groin strain and cornerback Chris Cook suffered a hip muscle strain. The Vikings already are without safety Harrison Smith (turf toe).
|Detroit||2||Bottom 9th Inning|
|Detroit||99||4th Qtr 2:07|
|Milwaukee||94||4th Qtr 3:31|
|Portland||58||3rd Qtr 5:36|
|LA Lakers||66||3rd Qtr|
|Indiana||24||2nd Qtr 8:40|
|NY Islanders||1||2nd Prd|
|Pittsburgh||0||1st Prd 15:09|
|Gardner-Webb||32||2nd Half 17:06|
|CS-Bakersfield||21||2nd Half 18:58|
|Utah Valley U||37|
|Milwaukee||22||1st Half 3:45|
|Southern Ill||21||1st Half 6:50|
|Eastern Ky||0||1st Half 20:00|
|(5) South Carolina||67|
|(14) NC State||79|
|(11) Penn State||82|
|(2) Notre Dame||83|
|(19) Michigan State||61|
|Hartford||52||2nd Half 1:49|
|(13) North Carolina||70||2nd Half 4:08|
|Auburn||30||2nd Half 11:55|
|(15) Texas A&M||63|
|Houston||68||2nd Half 1:23|
|Minnesota||52||2nd Half 10:18|
|San Francisco||29||2nd Half 17:17|
|Air Force||24||2nd Half 14:23|
|Wyoming||27||2nd Half 16:13|
|San Diego State||22||2nd Half 20:00|
|Washington St||45||2nd Half|
|Texas Tech||12||1st Half 11:30|
|Rider||22||1st Half 1:36|
|San Jose St||0||1st Half 20:00|
|San Diego||10:00 PM|
|Aug 9 - vs. Houston||7 pm||X||27-13|
|Aug 16 - at Buffalo||6 pm||X||20-16|
|Aug 25 - at San Francisco||7 pm||X||34-14|
|Aug 29 - vs. Tennessee||7 pm||X||24-23|
|2013 regular season|
|Sep 8 - at Detroit||Noon||X||34-24|
|Sep 15 - at Chicago||Noon||X||31-30|
|Sep 22 - vs. Cleveland||Noon||X||31-27|
|Sep 29 - vs. Pittsburgh (in London)||Noon||X||34-27|
|Oct 6 - Bye|
|Oct 13 - vs. Carolina||Noon||X||35-10|
|Oct 21 - at. NY Giants||7:40 pm||X||23-7|
|Oct 27 - vs. Green Bay||7:30 pm||X||44-31|
|Nov 3 - at Dallas||Noon||X||27-23|
|Nov 7 - vs. Washington||7:25 pm||X||34-27|
|Nov 17 - at Seattle||3:25 pm||X||41-20|
|Nov. 24 - at Green Bay||Noon||26-26|
|Dec 1 - vs. Chicago||Noon||X||23-20|
|Dec 8 - at Baltimore||Noon||X||29-26|
|Dec 15 - vs. Philadelphia||Noon||X||48-30|
|Dec 22 - at Cincinnati||Noon||X||42-14|
|Dec 29 - vs. Detroit||Noon||X||14-13|
Poll: Which free-agent quarterback would you most like the Vikings to sign?