One yard and a missed facemask call separated Webb and the Vikings from an improbable comeback that would’ve set rival Detroit Lions back in their playoff hopes. They almost had the W, but couldn’t pull it off, and in the end, an L is still an L.
The Vikings found themselves down 21-0 within 10 minutes of the 1st quarter before Ponder started to get himself together, but not before he threw a pick 6 to Alfonso Smith. Midway through the 3rd quarter Leslie Frazier decided he had enough, pulling out QB Ponder (11-21 115 yards, 2 TD, 3 INT) for 2nd-year player Joe Webb.
Webb led the Vikings on two straight TD drives, the very first one being a 65-yard run that made it a 10-point game. The Vikings defense made a few stops and held Detroit out of the endzone (they only allowed 13 points in the last 50 minutes of the game), and Webb began to engineer a 15+ play drive in the last 2 minutes to try and win the game.
It didn’t work, it fell short.
I think if Webb wins this game, there’s no argument, he starts next week, Vikings let him play and see what he can do, maybe lure somebody into taking him off their hands for a late round draft pick.
But he didn’t win, and Ponder will start next week, the question is, SHOULD he?
Ponder has been awful the last few weeks, and while I know he’s a rookie, he’s been making the same bad throws that have gotten him into trouble in the first place. Throwing low to the inside shoulder of a receiver on deep outs, throwing across the body mid-run, forcing passes into windows that just aren’t open, and fumbling. You’ve heard the numbers, 3 INTs in his first 3 starts, 8 in the last four, he had one fumble until today (he had 2, one of which was for 6). Is he regressing? Or just hitting a rookie wall? Do you let him play through it, or do you let your other young QB, who you don’t have as much money invested in, take some snaps and see what’s there?
I think you know my opinion.
Why not let Webb play? Why not give him these three games, three chances to prove himself, and make Ponder wait til next season? Either way he’s coming back, whether he throws for 10 TDs down the stretch or 10 more INTs, once next season rolls around, Webb will once again be a forgotten man with way too much talent to come in for 5 plays in some special package.
What do you think?