5 Reasons It's Time to Bench Donovan McNabb, Play Christian Ponder

Ray TannockSenior Analyst IOctober 5, 2011

5 Reasons It's Time to Bench Donovan McNabb, Play Christian Ponder

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    The Minnesota Vikings have lost their first four games—all winnable, might I add—and the struggling Donovan McNabb is starting to become a bad investment, but is it time to sit McNabb and start Christian Ponder?

    McNabb has had more than enough time, and has more than enough experience to do far better than he has through the first 25 percent of the season, but that doesn't appear to be the case, so yes, it may be time to start Ponder.

    Let's see why.

An Alternative

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    When you're an 0-4 NFL team, the first thing you need to do is install some sort of change that could jump-start the team.

    The quarterback situation in Minnesota is a fine place to do so since McNabb's inconsistency has been a major problem.

    Giving the rookie a shot—since he is viewed as the quarterback of the future—could act as a nice shot in the arm for Minnesota.


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    Let's face it: Opposing defenses just aren't going to know how to defend against a guy they have never faced.

    Sure, the norm would be to mix up looks and bring more pressure, but against that double-tight end set the Vikings deploy, it isn't so easy.

    Opposing defenses would have a tough time figuring out Ponder, especially if the Vikings stick to—or add to—their ground game, which could show itself to be a difference-maker.

McNabb Doesn't Have It Anymore

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    Donovan McNabb has shown flashes of his old self through four games this season, but he has also shown he simply doesn't have the magic that once defined him.

    One of the signs of an aging quarterback who is losing his mojo is the fact that they sort of revert back to making rookie mistakes, like forcing a pass or making a pass that should've never been made.

    McNabb has done that in each of the four weeks he has played.

Players Versus Coaches

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    Coach Leslie Frazier doesn't want to make a change for fear of showing he made a mistake, or the organization made a bad investment—I get it.

    The reality is, however, mistakes do happen.

    So, McNabb wasn't what you thought he was going to be, deal with it and move on, but don't drag an already ugly situation through the mud.

    Brad Childress did the same thing with Tarvaris Jackson, holding onto him for too long, and Frazier should've learned from Childress' mistakes.

The Fans

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    Donovan McNabb isn't working out, and the last thing an organization wants to do is alienate itself from its fan-base, because the Vikings are showing themselves to be to intimidated to admit a waiver-wire mistake.

    If the organization is afraid of the fans barking over McNabb being a mistake now, how do you think they are going to react if McNabb remains the starter and the Vikings lose two more?

    Give the kid the nod, and give old man time a rest.

    Back in August I talked about how Christian Ponder had more time to study the offense and had already began working with some players—the kid's put in his study time.

    Back in the summer I talked to Ponder about his excitement and level of comfortableness with the offense, and he responded by discussing his hopes for eventually getting the opportunity to help this team win with his skill set and growing knowledge.

    No NFL fan wants to see his/her team lose each week, and no NFL fan wants to turn on the television or cart him/herself to a game in shame.

    The bottom line is McNabb isn't working, the Vikings need a change and the fans want to win now.

    Give the kid his chance, and let's see what he's got!