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August 02, 2013 10:25 PM

Ponder Under Pressure

Mankato, MN

The first week of Vikings training camp in Mankato has come and gone and plenty of faces, new and old, were busy proving their worth. When it comes to quarterback Christian Ponder, the third year player is under the most pressure to perform out of anybody heading into the new season.

The third year of Christian Ponder's NFL career is upon us and there are still plenty of questions to be answered. While Ponder improved in just about every category from year one to year two finishing with 18 touchdowns to 12 interceptions, all eyes are on him once again to see where he goes from here.

"Quarterback is about decision-making and accuracy. For me, it's about getting more comfortable with the offense, making better decisions, watching film and working on my fundamentals, footwork. From head to toe, everything so I can throw the ball better," Ponder said.

Other than the MVP in the backfield, Ponder didn't have a whole lot of weapons at his disposal last season. The Vikings hope that is different this year with newly acquired wide receiver Greg Jennings and first round draft pick Cordarrelle Patterson donning the purple. Now it's all about learning each other's strengths.

"Especially in the quarterback position. It's a big aspect of the game and so there obviously needs to keep building that trust. We're going to keep doing that as we build this chemistry and as I get more comfortable in this offense and with the guys that we have," Ponder said.

Minnesota didn't have a viable backup for Ponder last season and it showed in the playoffs. But with Joe Webb switching to wideout and Matt Cassel added to the depth chart, there's not a whole lot of room for disappointing play, meaning Ponder will have to be at his best to keep his job.

"I want to get to that point. I understand what I can do well and what others can do well compared to myself. I do want to be the best at what I can do and what I bring to the table. I'm finding that out as we go," Ponder said.

While Adrian Peterson's historic season overshadowed just about everything last year, the Vikings ranked next to last in the league passing-wise with just 171.9 yards per game.

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