When setting goals, it’s important to stay within the realm of possibility. For example, when you’re a chronic drunk who makes formulaic sitcoms, you probably shouldn’t forecast your return to glory too early (#truthtorpedoed).

For the first and likely only time in the history of time, Charlie Sheen may have something in common with Christian Ponder, the Vikings sophomore quarterback who’s scoring points for ambition, but he doesn’t understand the concept of realistic goal setting. After a rookie season that mostly consisted of the kind of rookie play that we’ve come to expect from first-year QBs not named Cam newton (as many interceptions as touchdowns, a 54.3 completion percentage, and 30 sacks), Ponder is eying a drastic and swift improvement.

And that’s swell. Really swell, Christian. But maybe you should set those sights a little lower to something that’s, you know, possible.

Here’s what he told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune:

“We want 75 percent completions on first and second downs. That’s the number we’re shooting for. Obviously, we were in a lot of third-and-long situations a year ago, and we want to get out of that.”

Again, that’s just terrific. Ponder and the Vikings offense need to improve, and that’s not possible without grand goals. But he’s blown past grand here.

As noted by Brian McIntyre, last year Ponder completed 50.9 percent of his passes on first down, and 56.8 percent on second down. Both of those numbers are significantly below his stated goal, a ratio even the league’s elite, record-breaking passers didn’t reach last year. In 2011 Tom Brady completed 68.3 percent of his passes on first down and 67.3 on second down, while Drew Brees finished with 71.1 and 71.2.

So settle down, you young whippersnapper. You have learnin’ to do yet

And now the links part of the links post…

  • Joe Namath: football’s most misunderstood quarterback? [Football Perspective]
  • Russell Wilson thinks he can be the Seahawks’ starting quarterback. Now. [Sports Radio Interviews]
  • A moment of honesty from Daniel Thomas. Last year he wasn’t eating properly, and he was therefore out of shape. This year he’s on a strict diet of rice cakes, or something. [Ben Volin on Twitter]
  • Why we love Hard Knocks, and players really hate Hard Knocks. Also, why players hate fun. [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
  • Peyton Manning will likely play the entire first half Saturday. [Peter Burns on Twitter]
  • When is the douchebag line crossed, and a players’ level of douche becomes intolerable? It’s an inexact science, but let’s investigate. [Jeffri Chadiha]
  • Hey Jake Locker, your regular-season status could be determined Friday night. No pressure, kid. [The Tennessean]
  • Saints fans are so original with their “free Payton” flying banner. And adorable. [Sportress of Blogitude]
  • The Jets are interested in Jeff Demps, because of course they are. [Jenny Ventras]
  • The Steelers’ injury situation is getting ridiculous. Maybe that would change if the average age of their roster wasn’t 57. [Total Steelers]