Mike Zimmer freely admits that Teddy Bridgewater is not that great a fantasy football quarterback.
If Mike Zimmer was picking a fantasy football team, it’s safe to say Teddy Bridgewater would not be his quarterback.
In an interview with Tom Pelissero of USA TODAY, Zimmer defended Bridgewater against critics who say he isn’t in the same league as the guys who put up big stats week-in-and-week-out.
In the process Zimmer pretty much conceded that Bridgewater and the Vikings are not going to be stat-monsters on offense this year (via USA TODAY):
"I’m not going to mention names, but there’s a bunch of quarterbacks throwing for 300 yards and their team doesn’t win. They make mistakes. They don’t play right in the critical situations of the game. And (people) say, ‘Oh, his arm strength.’ His arm strength is fine. He’s been throwing the ball 55 yards down in practice all the time. Ask what kind of arm Joe Montana had or any of these other guys. It’s just so fantasy football now. Our team is built a certain way, and that’s how we’re going to play."
Zimmer told Pelissero in no uncertain terms that Minnesota will be a run-first team this year and that Adrian Peterson will once again be the featured weapon.
Yeah, stop the presses on that one.
Look, nobody expects Teddy Bridgewater to suddenly become Drew Brees. We know what Teddy is and what he is not.
But you’re fooling yourself it you think the Vikings can consistently be in the playoff hunt for years to come unless Bridgewater ups his game.
The Vikings will not be a year-in-and-year-out contender if Bridgewater keeps having years comparable to his first two in the league.
Mike Zimmer is right to defend Bridgewater but at the same time he must know that Bridgewater will have to produce better if the team is going to keep winning.
And if Bridgewater produces, that will mean better stats. Those stats may not be a perfect indicator of how good a quarterback is, but they do tell us some valuable things, no matter how dismissive Mike Zimmer wants to be.