5

January

UPDATED: Christian Ponder Inactive For Wild Card Playoff Game vs. Packers

Christian Ponder vs. Green Bay Packers

Ponder’s status for tonight’s playoff matchup is still somewhat in question

UPDATE:

As of 5:30 Lambeau time, Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder has been ruled out for tonight’s game and is inactive.  Joe Webb will get the start.

At 4:20pm CDT, Ponder was seen heading back into the Vikings locker room with head athletic trainer Eric Sugarman.  Ponder had spent 15 minutes throwing to test his elbow.  More to come shortly.

Earlier:

At the eleventh hour, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune and 1500 ESPN’s Tom Pelissero have reported that Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder is still dealing with elbow bursitis suffered when he hit a Packer defender’s helmet in last week’s game.  There has been speculation all day that Minnesota may turn to back up quarterback Joe Webb to start tonight.

“The expectation is the Vikings will work out Ponder at Lambeau Field a few hours before the 7 p.m. kickoff to make sure the issue is not significantly impacting his throwing motion,” 1500 ESPN’s Tom Pelissero wrote on the website.

An NFL source said Ponder should be able to play with the injury, which generally is treated with rest but may take weeks to fully heal. The bigger concern may be his limited practice reps this week.

The Tribune reported that it is “looking more likely” that Webb gets the start tonight.  During the regular season, Webb had one carry this season for -1 yard.  He didn’t attempt a single pass.  About the only advantage that Webb would give the Vikings is that the Packers likely didn’t spend any time preparing for him in practice.  Webb is clearly a better runner than he is a passer so this scenario would seem to favor Green Bay.

I expect Ponder to try and play given the significance of this game but an elbow injury to his throwing arm does him no favors.  Last week, Ponder had one of the best games of his short NFL career.  It has been widely thought that he will need to do the same this week to lead the Vikings to a victory at Lambeau.

 

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Jason Perone is an independent sports blogger writing about the Packers on "AllGreenBayPackers.com

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