Ponder stumbles back into starting QB role thanks to Freeman's concussion
In Freeman's defense, he was signed by the Vikings just two weeks prior to Monday night's game, giving him very little time to learn the playbook and become acclimated to his new receivers. He still looked awful, however, frequently missing open receivers and failing to lead the offense to a single scoring drive. It's reasonable to expect significant improvement over the rest of the season, but it's tough to say just how high Freeman's ceiling is based on his play so far this year.
Christian Ponder - the opening day starter who led the Vikings to the playoffs in 2012 - stumbles back into the starting role with Freeman now sidelined. He'll take on a Packers defense that he lit up for three touchdowns and a career-high 120.2 passer rating in Week 17 a year ago. Of course, he had a 41.9 passer rating in last year's Week 13 contest with the Packers, so he is by no means some sort of Packer killer.
If Ponder absolutely terrorizes the Packers 24th ranked pass defense in a winning effort, he could have a shot at holding on to the starting job (albeit on a short leash), but the Vikings will likely go back to Freeman once he is healthy. The Vikings were planning on starting Freeman in Week 8 despite his horrendous team debut, so they seem committed to getting him acclimated to his new team.
The quarterback situation is a mess in Minnesota, and if they finish the season with one of the worst records in the league, I'll expect them to target one of the several promising quarterback prospects at the top of the 2014 draft.