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As expected, Vikings fans boo Ponder’s return

By Chris Tomasson St. Paul Pioneer Press MINNEAPOLIS -- Just as he expected, quarterback Christian Ponder was booed Saturday night in his return to Minnesota. But he didn't respond with what he had thought about doing. Ponder, who had a mediocre ...

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(Brad Rempel, USA TODAY Sports) Raiders quarterback Christian Ponder, left, scrambles in the third quarter against the Vikings at Saturday at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.

By Chris Tomasson

St. Paul Pioneer Press

MINNEAPOLIS - Just as he expected, quarterback Christian Ponder was booed Saturday night in his return to Minnesota. But he didn’t respond with what he had thought about doing.

Ponder, who had a mediocre Vikings tenure from 2011-14 before signing last March with Oakland as a free agent, returned for a 20-12 preseason loss at TCF Bank Stadium. Earlier in the week, Ponder had talked about taking a bow when the boos came.

“It never happened because it kind of happened late when I was running onto the field already, so I probably wimped out,” Ponder said.

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Ponder entered the game with 6:25 left in the second quarter, shortly after an hour and five minute weather spurred most fans to leave. Still, there were enough left to make the boos noticeable.

“I was prepared for it, so it didn’t really affect me,” Ponder said. “It made it kind of fun coming back. It was good to see a lot of the guys, a lot of the staff and a lot of the players and reconnect with them. But you know, it was expected, so I got a little chuckle out of it.”

Ponder completed 7 of 11 passes for 69 yards. He played three series, leading the Raiders to two field goals.

“The first drive went pretty well,” Ponder said of a drive that included a 39-yard pass to Seth Roberts. “We’d like to finish with touchdowns rather than field goals, but it was good to get points on the board. ... There were some good things and some things that I can improve upon, but it was good to be out there.”

Ponder is battling Matt McGloin for the backup job behind starter Derek Carr. McGloin completed 5 of 7 passes for 20 yards and didn’t lead the Raiders to any points.

The Pioneer Press is in a media partnership with Forum News Service.

 

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