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Christian Ponder handed Minnesota Vikings QB job

The Minnesota Vikings have many things to worry about, but the quarterback position is not one of them.

Coach Leslie Frazier has already named Christian Ponder the starter for the 2012 season, Brian Hall of Fox Sports North reported Thursday.

"Well, we're going into it with Christian being our starting quarterback," Frazier said. "If something were to happen to Christian because of injury, we feel like we have a capable backup in Joe (Webb). But there's no competition as to, 'Joe has to do this to beat out Christian.' Christian, it's his job.

"We're trusting that he's going to be the guy to lead us to where we want to go this next season. And we think we have a capable guy if something were to happen to Christian, that Joe could step in and do a real good job for us."

After replacing Donovan McNabb in October last season, Ponder completed 54.3 percent of 291 pass attempts for 1,853 yards with 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. From an advanced metrics standpoint, Ponder was in the bottom of five of qualifying quarterbacks in DYAR (defense-adjusted yards above replacement) and DVOA (defense-adjusted value over average), according to FootballOutsiders.com.

Those numbers are understandable when you consider that Ponder was denied an NFL offseason by the lockout and was without Adrian Peterson for much of his stretch as a starter. He also lost No. 2 receiver Michael Jenkins to a season-ending knee injury and saw Visanthe Shiancoe's involvement slow to a crawl.

A full offseason to learn and grow within the Vikings' system, the additions of No. 2 receiver Jerome Simpson and tight end John Carlson, having Peterson possibly healthy and gaining 20 extra pounds could benefit Ponder in Year Two.

"I've gotten bigger. I'm stronger. I'll try to keep my flexibility," Ponder said of his additional mass, via 1500ESPN.com on Thursday. "There's a lot of different things we can do flexibility-wise with the yoga. Just trying to keep my body in the right condition and getting stronger."

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