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Christian Ponder: We had good chance to win, that's what hurt most

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

By almost any measure, Vikings backup quarterback Joe Webb had a forgettable performance against the Packers in Saturday's wild-card game. Granted, it was the first action he had seen all season, so he was understandably rusty. And the reason the Vikings were even in that predicament was because starter Christian Ponder was sidelined with bursitis.

The Packers won easily, 24-10, and Webb finished the game 11 of 30 for 180 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. And all Ponder could do was watch. On Monday, the second-year quarterback admitted that it was tough to be unable to play.

"(We) had a very good chance of winning that game," he said, according to ESPN1500.com's Tom Pelissero. "For myself to let my team down, that's what hurts the most."

Even though reports didn't emerge until hours before Saturday's game, Ponder knew shortly after the Week 17 win over the Packers that his right arm might be an issue.

"Once I left the (Week 17) game on that Sunday, it was pretty tough to even move it," Ponder said on Monday. "We were optimistic. We put a lot of time and treatment and we saw progressions each day that maybe we had some hope that by 7 o'clock Saturday night I'd be ready to go. That just didn't come into fruition."

Minnesota fans were predictably upset by the outcome, but these were also many of the same folks who thought Webb should've gotten an opportunity to play earlier in the season when Ponder was struggling. But Webb's performance solidified Ponder's place atop the depth chart -- coach Leslie Frazier confirmed as much Tuesday -- and now he'll have the offseason to get healthy.

"I think it's something that will heal up," Ponder said. "No surgery or anything. Just giving it some time and it will get there."

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to the Pick-6 Podcast on iTunes. You can follow Ryan Wilson on Twitter here: @ryanwilson_07.

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