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Ponder or Webb? (10/05/2011)
By John Edstrom

...decisions, decisions

Well fans, it is now becoming clear that Donovan McNabb is not capable of leading this team to victory, rather, the dank and moldy cellar. Many, however, including Coach Leslie Frazier, are not ready to face the fact, since no obvious alternative presents itself. After watching McNabb these last four games you canít escape the conclusion that he is no longer an accurate enough passer to win consistently, and becomes more scatter-armed as the pressure dials up. I wish I could say something different, as I thought acquiring him was a good move. But it is what it is, as the players love to say almost as much as, ďI just want to go out there and have fun,Ē tough to do when the season starts 0-4.

Frazier is hoping, I guess, that McNabb will play better if his offensive line would give him a little better protection. Although he was sacked only twice against KC, he was under constant pressure. It would also help for them to block a little more effectively for Adrian Peterson who, after some initial success, found himself bottled up behind the line of scrimmage in the second half, frantically reversing field and scrambling like a QB, to little avail. I donít expect to see Phil Loadholt continuing to start at right tackle, unable, as he is, to handle the speed rush or avoid motion penalties. Which is more frustrating to watch? Then again, there is leakage also from the left, and the interior, come to think of it.

In any case, the Purple might be 4-0 right now if they werenít leading the league in stupid penalties, an integral part of their personality over the years.

It is apparent that the Vikings offensive line needs help and thereís no one waiting in the wings. They need help at QB also, where both Joe Webb and Christian Ponder are available. What to do? I have no better idea than Leslie Frazierís, which is to stand pat and hope that, miraculously, McNabb will somehow improve his dismal passing statistics, not a good bet considering his performance last year. The hope, growing slimmer by the second, was that McNabb would rebound from that record, which might have been Redskinsí coach Mike Shanahanís fault, and enjoy some sort of Indian summer resurgence late in his career as Brett Favre did in 2009.

If not, it will soon be inescapable that Ponder or Webb must be thrown into the breach, this season given up for dead. Ponder is the hope for the future, not expendible as cannon fodder. Webb is not the former, probably the latter, but using him now will only delay the otherís development.

Decisions, decisions. 


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