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By: Aj Mansour | KFAN.com
Minneapolis, MN - As the Minnesota Vikings players began official preparations for the 2013 NFL season this week at Winter Park, a lot of attention was obviously paid towards the team's quarterback Christian Ponder. Entering his third season as a pro, Ponder is poised to take the next step in establishing himself as the long-term solution at quarterback for the Vikings. An intimidating and scary proposition for some.
But it wasn't five minutes into our conversation with Ponder today that he shared word of a real fear that crept up on the second-year starter during this past off season.
Speaking for the first time since the Vikings lost to the Green Bay Packers in the opening round of the 2012 Playoffs (a game in which Ponder was benched with an injured elbow), Ponder shared that two weeks after the season, he was rushed to the emergency room as his injured elbow had once again swelled up.
"A couple of weeks after we were done [with the season], the injury came back randomly," Ponder shared. "All of the sudden the whole thing got rock hard and swelled up. I was scared to death it was a blood clot!"
Having been rushed to the hospital fearing the worst, Ponder placed a phone call to Vikings head trainer Eric Sugarman seeking his advice. The call, went through to Sugarman's voicemail. The doctors on site were prepared to conduct emergency surgery on Ponder's right throwing arm fearing that the quarterback was suffering from compartmental syndrome (a life-threatening condition which occurs after an injury, when there is not a sufficient amount of blood to supply the muscles and nerves with oxygen and nutrients because of the raised pressure within the compartment)."
"I called Sugs first and thank goodness because the doctor, obviously she was a great help, but she wanted to go into surgery," Ponder said. "It was a little scary and thankfully Sugs (Eric Sugarman), called me at the right moment, talked to the doctor and said, 'Don't do anything crazy! Just go in and give him an MRI.'"
The MRI allowed the team on site to better assess the situation where they then realized that the contusion had simply resurfaced and that there was no blood clot and not compartmentalization of the blood flow occurring.
Ponder went on to say that two weeks after the injury resurfaced, the swelling had gone down and things had returned to normal. For the past two months now, Ponder has been able to throw and work out at full speed and has encountered no further issues with the injured arm.
Aj Mansour covers Minnesota Sports for KFAN.com. Feel free to leave comments and questions regarding this post in the space provided below. For Vikings' updates and breaking Vikings' news, follow Aj on Twitter. @AjKFAN