From the moment the Minnesota Vikings traded back into the first round to take Teddy Bridgewater, it was only a matter of time before he took over as the team’s starting quarterback.
When Bridgewater makes his first start on Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons, he will be in line for something even bigger — the new face of the franchise.
With Adrian Peterson away from the team while he faces child abuse charges, the Vikings are searching for a new identity while the chaos from Peterson’s legal troubles and injuries to several high-profile players threaten to derail the team less than a month into the season.
In steps Bridgewater, the unflappable rookie, and all he has to do is pull the Vikings out of a spiral and step into the void left by Peterson’s departure.
With quarterback Matt Cassel lost for the season with a foot injury and Peterson out indefinitely while the legal process plays out, the Vikings have become Bridgewater’s team much faster than anyone expected.
The Vikings traded back into the first round on the opening night of the draft to snag Bridgewater in hopes that he could finally become the long-term answer at quarterback the team has been searching for ever since Daunte Culpepper went down with a knee injury in 2005.
Peterson was expected to continue to be the team’s star player for at least another season or two, providing a cocoon for the young quarterback while he got his feet underneath him. That all changed two weeks ago with Peterson’s stunning arrest in a child-abuse charge in Texas.
The Vikings started the season with the veteran Cassel, hoping to ease Bridgewater’s transition and give him some time to get acclimated to NFL life. But that all changed last week when Cassel went down.
Bridgewater stepped in for the injured Cassel on Sunday and completed 12 of 20 passes for 150 yards against a New Orleans defense that played the pass very aggressively with Peterson gone. The offense didn’t score a touchdown with him in the game, but his ability to handle the heat carried over from his turns in the huddle during the preseason.
When Bridgewater takes the field for his first game as a starter on Sunday against Atlanta, he won’t have Peterson to take his handoffs. He won’t have tight end Kyle Rudolph, who will miss about six weeks after having sports hernia surgery, to catch his passes and he won’t have starting right guard Brandon Fusco, who is out for the season with a torn pectoral muscle, to block for him.
He also won’t have a big entourage in the stands. Bridgewater said earlier this season — while he was still Cassel’s backup — he put six people, including his mother, girlfriend and agent, on a list to watch the game. Now that he’s starting, he said “that number hasn’t changed.”
Teddy Bridgewater too smooth
C.Munnerlyn German suplexes D.Brees
Captain Munnerlyn’s been watching Brock Lesnar.
fun fact: after bathing in the cold waters of Lake Minnetonka, every Minnesotan acquires the german suplex.
I love this because I absolutely hate the Saints
Boom top of our division already!!! I knew it wouldn’t take long. Try and stop us 5-0 counting preseason we don’t know how to lose!!!!
Cordarrelle Patterson puts on the jets
national football league
↳ minnesota vikings
TOP 25 NFL ACTIVE RUSHING TOUCHDOWN LEADERS
1. Adrian Peterson (2007- ) – 86
2. Maurice Jones-Drew (2006- ) – 68
3. Willis McGahee (2004- ) – 65
4. Steven Jackson (2004- ) – 62
5. Brandon Jacobs (2005- ) – 60
5. Frank Gore (2005- ) – 60
7. Marshawn Lynch (2007- ) – 58
8. Chris Johnson (2008- ) – 50
9. DeAngelo Williams (2006- ) – 46
10. Arian Foster (2009- ) – 45
11. BenJarvus Green-Ellis (2008- ) – 42
12. LeSean McCoy (2009- ) – 39
13. Ronnie Brown (2005- ) – 38
14. Rashard Mendenhall (2008) – 37
14. Ray Rice (2008- ) – 37
16. Michael Vick (2001- ) – 36
17. Matt Forte (2008- ) – 35
18. Ahmad Bradshaw (2007- ) – 34
19. Reggie Bush (2006- ) – 33
20. Mike Tolbert (2008- ) – 32
21. Michael Bush (2008- ) – 29
21. Jamaal Charles (2008- ) – 29
23. Cam Newton (2011- ) – 28
23. Fred Jackson (2007- ) – 28
25. Jonathan Stewart (2008- ) – 27
Randy Moss over Dallas