Real Name: Christian Ponder. Well, OK, you probably already knew that. BUT! Did you know that he was born in 1988? 1988. That's absolutely wild. Didn't he just turn old enough to drink like last week? And now he's making more money than I'll ever draw in green marker. Good for him.
Potential Nicknames: The Second Coming, The Minnesotan Cowboy, Brett Favre 2, Chrad Johnnington, Not Joe Mauer, Kacie McDonnell's Boyfriend, Second Rate Christ, and whatever else you can suggest in the comments.
Three Smiles! Ponder has a lot of potential and was clearly the most NFL ready quarterback in this draft class. The offense he played in at Florida State set him up well for a transition to the pros and for dealing with old guys as his boss (See, Bowden; Bobby). I couldn't have really said that about any of the other QBs in the draft this season that could properly combine experience, competition, skill sets, and potential. Cam? Gimmicky, but high potential. Gabbert? Same shit. You have to throw a pass further than six yards in the NFL, bro-migo. Ponder is about the readiest you'll find to plug in to a starting line-up, and Purple Jesus knows we need that. He's got good size too. He's six foot three, almost 230 pounds, and has taken a beating while at FSU but stayed in and fought through injuries. That can be a plus or a minus, but clearly we'd rather have a quarterback we can count on to start week in and week out instead of "Cooch, ah stubbed me toe, out tree weeks!" TarVar Jackson. NO THANK YOU. Also, he's already said he'll be wearing jersey number 7, so it's a nice transition in a weak economy for those poor individuals who have purchased a TarVar jersey and need to doctor it up for Ponder.
No Smiles. Well, he got hurt a lot and fought through injuries, and clearly that can be a bad thing. That's great that you can fight through a bursa sac in your throwing elbow, but if you just do it and suck, what's the point? Peyton Manning had a bursa sac injury in his leg and played through that, but he's a little better than you average bear. Ponder? No one knows. You also get the impression that his ceiling probably isn't as high as the other QBs that has big question marks, but more potential talent. Back to Cam, he's dumb as bricks but if he ever figures it out ... yikes. Same with Gabbert. You LOOK at him and get a quarterback chubby, but will it translate to the NFL? With Ponder, his ceiling is probably lower but how high do we need his potential to be? How hard is it to not throw interceptions right into a defenders chest and just hand off to Purple Jesus? Can't be that hard. In that case, Ponder might be just fine.
How He'll Fit In: Uh ... at the quarterback position. Crap. I clearly copied this template from last year. Anyway, the point is that he's going to be fighting right away for the starting spot for the Vikings. Currently, Joe Webb and Rhett Bomar are on the roster and you have to think the team will push to bring in a veteran to help the young guys out (taking notes, David Kahn, you dick?). However, I don't anticipate a level of veteran that will actually compete for the starting job. Instead, chances are we'll see a similar situation in Atlanta in 2008 when Musgrave was there with Matt Ryan when they had hot shot Chris Redman (remember him?) or like with Rex Sanchez and Mark Brunell in New York. Nothing sexy, but certainly capable for a game or two while Ponder sits out because McKinnie gave up a sack and got him concussed. I fully expect him to be the starter though and have him slide right in (TWSS?).
Who We'll Never Have to See Again: Tarvaris Jackson! Can you imagine?? No more jump passes, deer in headlights look, bumping knees with our best player ... holy shit, I cannot wait to have Ponder's name appear on the roster instead of his. Although, to be fair, I'd be excited if it said "Robert Pattinson" instead of TarVar. And yes, I had to Google that douches full name, haters.
Overall Grade: I give the Ponder pick a solid B. I don't hate it, I just hate where it was at. But as the days have passed and more information has leaked, it is sounding more and more like the Redskins and the Bills were willing to nab Ponder in the mid to late first round. Also, if we believe that Vikings truly couldn't trade back, and that Ponder really was one of the guys they said they'd take if he was there, then what are you going to do? Not have a quarterback for 2011? Ponder has potential that I think anyone can see, but likewise has question marks that leave people wondering what Prince Amukamara would have looked like in purple instead. When it's all said and done though, I can't hate. We know who our quarterback SHOULD be for, like, five years now. I couldn't even imagine that feeling one, two, four years ago. And it feels good, man.
And Here's a Funny Picture of Him, Maybe:
I'm liking Pondexter more and more as well. And pretty much solely because of this blog.
So, I guess... pat yourself on the back PJD. You are making contributions to this world in which we live.
Nicknames hmm.. I guess he is some kind of a smarty pants, nerd... Pondexter?
... I don't know.. maybe playing with the word 'christian'... The Methodist? ( that might be wishful thinking)
I'd feel so much better if he had a real football name. Andy Dalton has a real football name, and if he wasn't a ginger would have been the first QB selected (author's note: blatant hyperbole that can't be verified... suckas). I still think we should have taken Amukamura because I think we desperately need a shutdown corner (can you imagine Amukumura on one side and Winfield on the other? *Defensive secondary wood*) , but I understand that we needed a QB.
And I'm still holding out hope for a terrible season so that we can nab Andrew Luck in next year's draft.
Ponder is growing on me more & more... like everyone says, it would have been nice to not have to take him at 12 but if we had no other option then let's get this shit going.
I get more & more excited... just be nice if we actually knew that football would be played this year.