Ponder leads list of potential trade candidates


NFL.com writer Chris Wesseling believes Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder is one of 10 NFL players that will be traded this summer, according to an article he wrote on May 25.

Ponder is No. 1 on Wesseling's list of players to be traded. Earlier this month, the Vikings declined the quarterback's fifth-year option, meaning Ponder is eligible to become a free agent after this season.

Wesseling says that with the team bringing back Matt Cassel and drafting Teddy Bridgewater, it is illogical to keep a quarterback that does not fit into the Vikings' long-term plans.

Wesseling also listed four potential landing spots for Ponder, including divisional rival Green Bay, saying Ponder is an upgrade over the average NFL backup. Other potential landing spots include the Saints, Panthers and Falcons.

The Eagles and Giants could also be potential trade partners for the Vikings. Former Vikings offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave is now the Eagles quarterbacks coach, and former Vikings quarterbacks coach Craig Johnson is now the quarterbacks coach for the Giants.

Ponder is one of two quarterbacks on Wesseling's list, joining Patriots' backup Ryan Mallett.

The 2013 season was a rough one for Ponder. The 2011 first-round pick only started 9 games, throwing 7 touchdowns and 9 interceptions. He eventually lost the starting spot to 2014 projected starter Matt Cassel.

Rumors of Ponder's trade date back to last fall when he and his wife, ESPN reporter Samantha Ponder, put their Tonka Bay home up for sale. Even though Samantha shot down the trade rumors, talks of his trade began again in January, when the sale of their home was complete.

Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman still says, however, the team has no plans to trade Ponder. He said Ponder is still a young quarterback and has shown flashes. Ponder is even expected to take reps with the first team offense at the team's organized team activities beginning May 28.

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