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Ponder feels ready to play against Seahawks

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) - Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder says he is ready to play against Seattle on Sunday.

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Coach Leslie Frazier isn't quite ready to go that far just yet.

Frazier said he would wait until Saturday to see how Ponder's injured left shoulder feels before he decides on a starting quarterback against the Seahawks. But all signs point to Ponder, who was listed as probable on the team's final injury report of the week, getting his fourth straight start.

''My expectation is that I'm feeling good and I'll be ready to go,'' Ponder said after practice on Friday. ''But again, that's coach's call and I'm hoping it's me.''

Frazier said he expected Ponder to start barring any setbacks with his shoulder.

Ponder dislocated his left shoulder in Minnesota's previous game against Washington while lunging toward the end zone on a scramble in the third quarter. The injury ended a promising game for the embattled quarterback. He completed 17 of 21 passes for 174 yards with two touchdowns and an interception before he left with the injury.

Matt Cassel finished the game to help the Vikings improve to 2-7. Josh Freeman is also on the roster and signed midseason in hopes of getting a chance to play, but so far he has only played in one game.

Ponder is trying to reclaim the starting job as his own after losing it following an 0-3 start and a rib injury. So he doesn't want to let an injury stunt the momentum he gained from his start against the Redskins.

''I know he's worked hard with the work the trainers have given him to try and get back, but this one of those injuries that takes time,'' Frazier said. ''But I know that's part of it is thinking about what he accomplished in our last ballgame and want to build on that. He's working as hard as he can to get on the field.''

That was a Thursday night game, so he has had a little extra time to heal up. He plans to wear a harness to help stabilize the shoulder. Ponder said he felt some discomfort earlier in the week during practice, but had no ill effects on Friday.

''Earlier in the week I felt it a little bit,'' Ponder said. ''Today not at all. Not one time did I think that it's bothering me.''

Adrian Peterson missed the last two practices with a groin injury, but is listed as probable. Defensive tackle Letroy Guion (chest) and tight end Kyle Rudolph (foot) are listed as out while running back Matt Asiata (shoulder) is doubtful. Defensive tackle Fred Evans (knee) and fullback Rhett Ellison (ankle) are questionable.

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written
consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

  
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