Minnesota Vikings coach Leslie Frazier would not publicly reveal the team's starting quarterback Thursday despite reports that Matt Cassel is the guy. NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported that Cassel took the majority of reps at practice Thursday.
If there was any doubt about Cassel's status, Christian Ponder's comments gave it away.
"I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed. We'll see how things play out," Ponder said of all the recent developments at quarterback, via Sean Jensen of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. "Some of the dynamics of this organization have changed, obviously ... But I'm preparing like I'm going to be on the field."
In case those words weren't clear enough:
Ponder tried hard to put on brave face with media but his demeanor said it all. He knows it's over in Minnesotaâ Brian Murphy (@murphPPress) October 10, 2013
Immediate takeaway: Christian Ponder doesn't sound like a player vying for a starting spot, even though he said he split reps with Casselâ Sean Jensen (@seankjensen) October 10, 2013
Ponder also said that a "trade would be difficult to deal with," although staying in Minnesota obviously wouldn't be easy, either. It's a tough spot for Ponder. He entered the regular season thinking he was the team's franchise quarterback. Now he could be buried behind Cassel and Josh Freeman on the depth chart. Freeman is expected to take over as the starting quarterback.
We think the Vikings were right to move on from Ponder. They might have waited too long to do so. This is a prime example of why drafting the wrong quarterback in the first round can set an organization back for years.