Former Louisville Cardinal quarterback Teddy Bridgewater’s third season with the Minnesota Vikings was supposed to be a breakout year. After earning NFL Rookie of the Year Honors in 2014, Bridgewater and the Vikings earned a playoff appearance in 2015 for the first time in three years. A missed 27-yard field goal kept the Vikings from advancing in the playoffs. However, after proving they were contenders and not pretenders a season ago, there were high expectations heading into 2016. Unfortunately for Bridgewater, he suffered a gruesome injury during training camp and missed the entire season.
In a non-contact drill Teddy suffered a complete tear to his ACL and other structural damage. Shortly after the injury, the Vikings said their starting quarterback is expected to make a full recovery, but reports later surfaced stating that there’s no way to know how he’ll recover or if he’ll ever be the same.
This video shows just how scary the moment was when Bridgewater went down.
After Bridgewater went down, the Vikings traded for Sam Bradford. The former St. Louis Ram & Philadelphia Eagle got off to a great start with the Vikings once he became the starter, but Bradford cooled off towards the end of the season.
Bradford completed 395 of 552 passes and set an NFL record and Vikings franchise record with a completion percentage of 71.6. His 395 completions were also a franchise mark.
When healthy, I think Bridgewater will get a chance to earn his job back, but Vikings coach Mike Zimmer insinuated that they’ll be moving forward with Bradford at the start of next year.
“I think Sam has played great this year,” Zimmer said at the Vikings season ending press conference. “I think he has earned the right to be the starting quarterback. Sam has done remarkable with the things he’s done this year with all the things he’s had to do.
After praising Bradford, Zimmer provided an update on Bridgewater.
“Right now, all I’m worried about is Teddy getting better,” Zimmer said. “He comes in here every single day and busts his rear end. “I just want him to get better, so we’ll worry about all of those other things later,” he added.
“There’s no exact injury where it’s all the same,” Zimmer added. “You’re talking about an ACL, well there’s lots of those and they’re all the same. This one, there’s no exact (injury) … some are with nerve damage, some are without nerve damage, there’s just so many variables with this particular injury.”
As mentioned, it’s tough to predict how long it’ll take for Bridgewater to fully recovering, considering the extent of the injury. With that said, there’s no question that he’ll be working as hard as possible to get back on the field.
“Teddy is a guy who will do everything possible to get back as he soon as possibly can get back. “He would be a guy I would never bet against,” Zimmer added.
Nick Coffey is the creator and lead publisher for TheCardinalConnect.com. Along with covering Louisville basketball, football and recruiting, Nick also hosts The Red Zone weekdays from noon – 3:00 PM on Cards Radio 790 KRD.