When the Vikings and Packers kickoff on Monday night at Lambeau Field, they’ll each be kicking off the second half of their season. Both teams have already enjoyed their bye weeks and both teams will be playing their 9th game.
But despite being so far along in the season, both the Vikings and Packers will face a similar challenge in preparing for this week’s contest – a limited amount of tape since the last meeting. Both the Vikings and Packers have played only one other opponent since their Week 7 meeting. Adding to the unfamiliarity is the fact that Monday night’s game will mark just the third career start for Vikings staring QB Christian Ponder.
Ponder’s first career start came against these Packers back in Week 7, and the rookie responded with a solid outing. He was 13 of 32 for 219 yards with 2 TDs and 2 INTs, guiding the Vikings to within 6 points of the undefeated defending Super Bowl champions. Not bad for a rookie in his debut.
But you can be sure that Packers Defensive Coordinator Dom Capers and his crew will have a few new tactics to employ in their second go-around against the young passer.
“I’m sure there will be some wrinkles that he (Ponder) didn’t see the first time,” Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier said on Thursday. “They’ll (Green Bay) look at some tape. And they didn’t have a lot of tape on him going into that ball game (in Week 7). They’ll have some new wrinkles, but we’ll also have some new wrinkles from an offensive standpoint.”
The Packers have a defense loaded with playmakers, starting with LB Clay Matthews in the front seven and continuing with ball-hawks in the secondary such as Tramon Williams and Charles Woodson. Green Bay is tied for 2nd in the NFL and 1st in the NFC with 19 takeaways this season, a total that includes the 2 INTs Woodson grabbed from Ponder just 3 weeks ago.
With that said, Frazier sounded confident in his QB on Thursday.
“But I get the impression from being around him (Ponder), and the way he played in that first game versus them, that he’ll be able to handle those looks, if there are some new looks that they may bring,” Frazier said.
Over the next several weeks with the stadium issue on the front burner in Minnesota, we’ll have a piece of stadium information posted after each vikings.com Blog entry.
Stadium Did You Know?
Not only will a Vikings stadium keep one of Minnesota’s biggest assets in the State, but building a new facility will also support thousands of jobs and generate significant economic activity at a time when the State desperately needs it. According to Mortenson Construction, 1,600 construction workers will work over 900,000 hours in just the first year of construction.
Tags: Christian Ponder, Leslie Frazier
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