NFL

Vikings QB Ponder inactive for playoffs vs. Packers

1/5/13 in NFL   |   BrianMaddock   |   1429 respect

Minnesota Vikings second-year quarterback Christian Ponder has been ruled out for the team's NFC wild-card game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field on Saturday due to an elbow injury. The decision was announced 90 minutes before the kickoff, leaving Joe Webb, who hasn’t taken a single start this season, as the Minnesota Vikings starting quarterback against the defense-heavy Green Bay Packers.
 
Christian Ponder sustained the injury knocking the elbow of his throwing arm against Green Bay Packers safety Morgan Burnett’s helmet in the 37-34 season finale victor over the Packers last Sunday. Morgan Burnett delivered a jarring hit to Christian Ponder on a blitz. Still, Christian Ponder finished the game with three touchdowns and a career-high passer rating of 120.2.
 
The 30-year-old Christian Ponder remained limited through practice all week and was listed as questionable against the Green Bay Packers on the Minnesota Vikings’ injury report. Although the injury wasn’t initially expected to be so serious, Christian Ponder later developed swelling in the arm and could no longer bear to play through the pain. Third-year quarterback Joe Webb had been taking most of the snaps with the first-team offense during practice this week.
 
During early Saturday morning warmup at Lambeau Field, Christian Ponder took only a dozen soft throws and struggled on zipping the ball through the air on long throws. Christian Ponder exited early, leaving Joe Webb and second-year undrafted quarterback McCleod Bethel-Thompson to complete the warmup. McCleod Bethel-Thompson will be Joe Webb’s backup quarterback against the Green Bay Packers.
 
Joe Webb hasn’t attempted a single pass all season. The 26-year-old Joe Webb has been more impressive with his feet, boasting a career average of 6.7 yards rushing yards on his 41 carries. He has a career-starting record of 1-1.  Joe Webb took his previous start in Week 13 last season.
 
Christian Ponder started all 16 games and turned over his bets performances later in the regular season, including finishing on a four-game winning streak. The former first-round pick Christian Ponder has completed 62 percent of his passes, while throwing for 2,925 yards, 18 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He also contributed 253 yards rushing (4.2 yards per carry).
 
Other Minnesota Vikings players inactive for the wild card game against Green Bay Packers were: wide receiver Stephen Burton, offensive lineman Troy Kropog, defensive end D’Aundre Reed, cornerback Brandon Burton and defensive end George Johnson.
 
Green Bay Packers were also missing: wide receiver Jarrett Boykin, running back James Starks, cornerback Davon House, defensive tackle Jerel Worthy and linebacker Frank Zombo due to injuries. Jerel Worthy also sustained a knee injury in the last outing against the Minnesota Vikings.
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