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Christian Ponder inactive for Vikings; Joe Webb to start

The stage is yours, Joe Webb. Ready or not.

The Minnesota Vikings announced quarterback Christian Ponder is inactive for Saturday night's wild-card playoff matchup against the Green Bay Packers, a stunning turn of events that puts Webb behind center in the biggest game of the NFL season.

Ponder was limited in practice this week after suffering a right elbow injury during last Sunday's win over the Packers. Ponder was listed as questionable Friday, though it was widely assumed he would play.

Doubt only began to creep into the picture Saturday. Fox Sports insider and NFL Network contributor Jay Glazer reported early in the afternoon that Vikings players had not been told if Ponder or Webb would start. Both players were seen warming up on the field hours before kickoff, though Ponder headed back to the locker room after a brief throwing session.

Webb has made three career starts, but he did not throw a pass during the 2012 regular season. Given the opponent, setting and stakes, this amounts to something of an impossible situation to be put in, but Webb at least got some reps this week to knock off the rust.

If it's possible for the Vikings to lean any harder on Adrian Peterson, they're likely to do it.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.

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