Reports out of Vikings camp seem to indicate that not only is Christian Ponder struggling to show vast improvements from a shaky sophomore campaign, but the Vikings quarterback is also struggling to keep his starting job safe from backup Matt Cassel. It's absolutely imperative that he show something which indicates progress as a downfield passer in his third season. NFL franchises don't wait on quarterbacks anymore. It's now or never. L

ast season Ponder was a pedestrian game manager who struggled completing passes downfield, but the Vikinngs expect an evolution. In the name of Purple Jesus, Adrian Peterson, that can't happen again or they'll have wasted almost all over Adrian Peterson's first seven seasons. It'd be nice to see him paired with a quarterback who can divert defense's focus away from him on a few players and preventing them consistently  packing eight in the box, but it looks that won't happen in 2013. It's only May and already we get why Percy Harvin wanted out of Minnesota so badly.

Via NFL.com:

"Watching Christian Ponder out there, the footwork didn't look great," Judd Zulgad, of 1500ESPN.com, said Wednesday. "The passes didn't look all that sharp.

It's only June, and Ponder is playing with a new set of receivers. Things aren't going to be perfect. But the Vikings are counting on Ponder's stability in Bill Musgrave's offensive system to lead to major growth. They need major growth. That reportedly hasn't shown up yet in the offseason.

"You know what's not there? Crispness," Zulgad said. "There's not a sharpness. At times you would expect things to look second nature to Ponder. ... That's not what we're seeing so far, but like I said, it's minicamp."

Zulgad's comments caught my eye because they came on the same day ESPN's Adam Schefter wrote that "some believe" Matt Cassel is good enough to challenge for the Vikings' starting job this year.