Second-year quarterback Ponder shines as Vikings shock 49ers
Minneapolis, MN, United States (4E Sports) – Christian Ponder threw 21-for-35 for 198 yards with two touchdowns as the Minnesota Vikings upset the San Francisco 49ers, 24-13, Sunday at Mall of America Field.
Ponder came through with his best performance since assuming the starting quarterback role for the Vikings, throwing two touchdown passes and scoring a rushing TD that set the tone for his team.
The Viking defense also stepped up big time against one of the most explosive rushing offense in the NFL as linebacker Chad Greenway, Antoine Winfield, and company hounded Pro Bowl running back Frank Gore to just 63 yards on 12 carries.
49ers quarterback Alex Smith tried to rally his team by hooking up with Vernon Davis for one-yard TD play that cut the Viking deficit by five points, 17-13, with 6:17 left in the third quarter.
However, in a defensive oriented fourth quarter, Ponder found a cutting Kyle Rudolph for a 2-yard TD pass to seal the deal for the Vikings.
Smith covered 204 yards on 24-for-35 passes with one TD and one interception.
The Vikings and 49ers now share the same record at 2-1.