With Brett Favre comeback rumblings, Christian Ponder injury bumblings, and Matt Cassel starting tumblings (Cassel was sacked 47 times, an NFL most in 2008), what do we make of the Vikings quarterback situation?
Convenient timing that Ponder gets injured the day after Bus Cook says Favre is still brilliant? Fair of fans to rejoice if Ponder can't play and Cassel is the starter Sunday? Mitch Leidner is the Vikings best option in London?
We know none of these things. What we do know are these important facts leading up to the Vikes big tilt in London Sunday.
- Christian Ponder has thrown five interceptions, third most in the NFL, and possesses a quarterback rating of 65.9, only better than Geno Smith, Brandon Weeden, and one Josh Freeman. Some believe this injury is a blessing.
- Speaking of Freeman, he was benched by the Buccaneers today, after an absolutely gruesome start to the 2013 season. Is Freeman a better option than Ponder? He was a Pro Bowler in 2010, when he threw 25 touchdowns and only one more interception in 16 games than Ponder has in three games this year. 2010, however, is just a distant memory, as he has gone 11-23 as a starter since, while throwing 42 interceptions and completing just 57 percent of his passes in that time. Freeman is probably a long shot anyway, with the lack of success since 2010 and rapidly approaching Week 8 trade deadline looming at the end of October.
- Speaking of long shots, how abut Brett Favre? The Bus Cook story has been done to death, so we'll just put it this way; would you rather have a quarterback with a resume like this, or like this.
- Then there's the obvious, most likely, and only option that isn't absurdly farfetched on this list, Matt Cassel. The Vikings backup hasn't thrown a pass since Week 11 of last season when he was pulled mid-game for the dreadful Brady Quinn, and has a 5-12 record in his last 17 NFL starts. The upside of Cassel? He put up 10-5 seasons while at the helm for New England, filling in for the injured Tom Brady, and in his second year in Kansas City, when he threw 27 touchdowns to just seven interceptions.
What's the old adage? If you can do it once, you can do it again?
In Cassel's case, he's put up winning seasons twice, and while he didn't show a whole lot in the preseason this year, the Vikings may have to leave it to the nine-year veteran to try and prove that if you can do it twice, you can do it a third time.
Unless of course Mitch Leidner (Big Ten Freshman of the Week) or Joe Mauer (2001 Gatorade National Prep Football Player of the Year) are "just loosening their arms."