The Vikings have a plan in place for QB Teddy Bridgewater, and that plan is not to rush him nor to hold him back.
In his press conference from Vikings rookie minicamp Friday, coach Mike Zimmer laid it out pretty plainly. “We’re gonna bring him along at the right speed,” Zimmer said.
What is “the right speed” for Teddy Bridgewater? That is up to Teddy Bridgewater.
The rookie is already devouring the playbook, preparing himself for what figures to be an open competition with veteran Matt Cassel.
If the Vikings remain true to their “right speed” Teddy approach, Bridgewater will have a fair shake to unseat Cassel, but the Vikings won’t force Bridgewater into the lineup if Cassel is clearly better.
Zimmer said Bridgewater will get a look with the first team during OTAs so he can get used to working with Adrian Peterson and the rest of the starters. That to me is an indication that the Vikings want to give Bridgewater every possible chance to win the job in camp.
Mike Zimmer also said Friday that he doesn’t care about Teddy Bridgewater’s reportedly brisk jersey sales, which is a way of saying that the fans won’t dictate when Bridgewater plays.
Having Bridgewater as the starter on opening day would help ticket and merchandise sales. Of course, the final call has to be made by the coaching staff, not the suits upstairs.
No one will be pressuring Mike Zimmer to start Teddy Bridgewater. When he’s ready to go, he will go. The Vikings and all their fans are just hoping that “ready to go” point is reached sooner rather than later.