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Vikings GM Rick Spielman: No plans to trade QB Christian Ponder

Christian Ponder (Tom Dahlin/Getty Images) Christian Ponder has 38 touchdowns and 34 interceptions in three NFL seasons. (Tom Dahlin/Getty Images)

The Vikings have the eighth pick in the draft on Thursday. While Minnesota has been rumored to be looking at a number of the quarterbacks available, Christian Ponder reportedly is not on the trade block, Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said on Tuesday, according to ESPN.com's Ben Goessling.

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Ponder, 26, was Minnesota's first-round pick in 2011 (No. 12 overall), but has struggled in his time in the NFL.

"That would leave us with one quarterback. I would not do that," Spielman said about possibly trading Ponder. "We're going to need two quarterbacks. Three."

As it stands right now, Ponder would be the backup to veteran Matt Cassel. Spielman also told ESPN.com that he has not had any "specific talks" with the Rams about a deal for Sam Bradford, which has been widely reported.

The Vikings declined to pick up Ponder's fifth-year option, which would have paid him $9.686 million in 2015, but Spielman said that was only "to make sure we kept all our options going forward, especially financially."

Ponder has thrown for 6,436 yards, 38 touchdowns and 34 interceptions in 36 games over three seasons.

"Christian's still a very young quarterback. He's shown flashes, but he just hasn't been as consistent as you want yet," Spielman said. "You can't be afraid. If there's a guy there [in the draft], regardless of position, that you have strong feelings for, whether it's at 8 or 40, or wherever it is, or 16, then you take him. The one thing you cannot be afraid of in this job is to take chances or take risks on guys you feel strongly about. When you don't do that, I don't know how you get better."
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