With an unprecedented situation at quarterback, the Minnesota Vikings are in line to make the right decision on Teddy Bridgewater.
The Minnesota Vikings are coming off a run to the NFC Championship Game, with Case Keenum starting all but two games. All three quarterbacks they had on their roster last season–Keenum, Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Bradford–are set to become free agents too.
The Vikings have reportedly made a decision to let Keenum hit the market, rather than use the franchise tag on him. Amid increasing speculation about a run at Kirk Cousins in free agency, Bridgewater’s offseason status is no longer a big question mark.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, Bridgewater is expected to become a free agent. After he spent the early part of the 2017 season on the PUP list, there was a question if his contract would toll (carry over, in more precise layman’s terms) to 2018 and allow the Vikings to keep him very cheaply.
Bridgewater’s serious left knee injury during the 2016 preseason altered the course of his career. He missed that entire season, and returned for a few snaps last season at the end of a blowout win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
When Bridgewater last saw significant action, the Vikings won the NFC North in 2015 and were a made chip shot field goal away from winning a Wild Card game. His numbers were not great, with an offense catered to Adrian Peterson, so there’s a perception of great upside if Bridgewater played in an offense more centered on his strengths. There’s something to that, but leaving aside his knee possibly never being the same as it was, there are enough flaws in Bridgewater to be a healthy skeptic until he proves otherwise.
Bridgewater being able to hit free agency does not close the door on him being in Minnesota next season. But the Vikings appear set to leave sentiment aside in their quarterback search, with a move toward valuing talent over being a former first-round pick and a likeable person.