Aug 2, 2012
The Minnesota Vikings finished the 2011 season with the 28th ranked passing offense, with rookie Christian Ponder taking over at quarterback mid-season from a struggling Donovan McNabb. Ponder went on to complete just 54.3 percent of his passes, with 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions.
With two-thirds of a season and a full off-season of OTA’s under his belt, the former Florida State star is looking to have a solid sophomore season for the Vikings. Ponder will have two new passing weapons at his disposal this season, as the Vikings front office added tight end John Carlson and wide receiver Jerome Simpson via free agency.
Simpson made a name for himself in 2011 when he flipped over Arizona linebacker Daryl Washington to score a touchdown. Although he is suspended fro the first three games for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy, the five year veteran from Costal Carolina could be a nice late round pick in fantasy drafts this spring.
With Simpson, Ponder will have a legitimate deep threat to challenge defenses down the field. According to head coach Leslie Frazier: ”We didn’t have an answer away from Percy. We think with Jerome, we’ve got that and we can take some of the pressure off of Percy.”
Mockdraftcentral.com currently ranks Simpson as the 70th wide receiver overall and the 206th player off the board, making him a late round pick in most formats. Despite his poor ranking and pending suspension, his big play ability makes him an enticing late round flier in deep leagues.
Don’t expect more than 50 catches, however, it is possible for Simpson to be a touchdown threat and big play performer for Frazier and the Vikes.