Top 8 seasons by a Minnesota Vikings backup quarterback

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JANUARY 14: Quarterback Case Keenum - MInnesota Vikings
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JANUARY 14: Quarterback Case Keenum - MInnesota Vikings /
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(Photo by Tom Dahlin/Getty Images) Gus Frerotte
(Photo by Tom Dahlin/Getty Images) Gus Frerotte /

6. Gus Frerotte (2008)

  • Record: 8-3
  • Stats: 2,157 yards, 12 touchdowns, 15 interceptions

A seventh-round draft pick of the Washington Redskins in 1994, Gus Frerotte played five seasons in Washington starting, 46 of 52 games and amassing a 19-26-1 record.

In 1996 he led the Redskins to a 9-7 record and made the Pro Bowl. In his 15-year career, it was the only time he started all 16 games.  He played two more seasons in Washington making only 15 starts then moved on to Detroit, Denver, and Cincinnati before signing with the Minnesota Vikings for the first time in 2003.

In two seasons he backed up Daunte Culpepper making only two starts and moved on to play in Miami and St. Louis before returning to Minnesota in 2008. This time, at the age of 37 years old, he was the backup to Tarvaris Jackson, a second-round draft pick of head coach Brad Childress.

After opening the season 0-2, Jackson was benched in favor of Frerotte. He started the next 11 games leading the Vikings to an 8-5 record. A back injury forced Frerotte to the sideline and Jackson returned to as the starter for the final three games. The Vikings won two of the three and finished with 10-6. They made the playoffs by winning NFC North, but made an early exit behind Jackson losing the Wild Card game at home to the Philadelphia Eagles.

Frerotte’s career ended with the Vikings that season.

5. Teddy Bridgewater (2014)

  • Record: 6-6
  • Stats: 2,919 yards, 14 touchdowns, 12 interceptions

On a draft-day trade with Seattle, the Minnesota Vikings selected Teddy Bridgewater with the final pick in the first round of the 2014 draft. Bridgewater joined another former first-round pick Christian Ponder and Matt Cassel to compete for the quarterback position. Heading into the final preseason game, Bridgewater landed just behind Matt Cassel and ahead of Christian Ponder on the depth chart.

During the offseason, Cassel signed a two-year extension with the Vikings and was expected to be the starter after finishing 3-3 as the backup in 2013. Unfortunately, a broken foot in Week 3 against the Saints ended his season allowing a Bridgewater to take over as the starter.

Bridgewater finished the game against the Saints in Week 2 and started the following week. A sprained ankle forced him to miss Week 5 in Green Bay, a game that Ponder started and lost. The Minnesota Vikings finished the season with a 7-9 record and in third place in the NFC North. In 2015, Bridgewater started every game leading the Vikings to an 11-5 and a home playoff game. That season will forever be known for a missed 27-yard field goal that would have given the Vikings a playoff win over Seattle.

At the time the future looked extremely promising for the Vikings. They had finally found their long-term option at quarterback. Unfortunately, a freak knee injury during training camp in 2016 changed everything. Since then Bridgewater has started only one game since.