Teddy Bridgewater’s knee injury
The Vikings were extremely excited about their 2016 season. A major reason why was the progress their young quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was making.
Bridgewater was coming off a year where he started all 16 games and threw for 3,231 yards, 14 touchdowns, and nine interceptions. He also showed some promise as a runner as he galloped to 192 yards on the ground with three more scores.
Bridgewater was named to the Pro Bowl in 2015 and the team was excited to see what he could do with a healthy Adrian Peterson, and exciting targets like Kyle Rudolph, Adam Thielen, Laquon Treadwell, and Stefon Diggs to throw to.
Minnesota didn’t get to witness much of this. Just prior to the start of the regular season, Bridgewater suffered a catastrophic knee injury. The quarterback went down without even taking a hit and ended up tearing his ACL and dislocating his knee.
There were not only concerns about his season being over, but some were worried about the potential of his promising career ending early due to the injury as well.
Instead of panicking or rolling with a quarterback who wasn’t ready to lead the team, the Vikings traded a first-round pick to the Philadelphia Eagles and landed Sam Bradford.
Bradford ended up starting for Minnesota by Week 2 and he helped lead the team to a 7-8 record in 2016. While his play was commendable, changing the quarterback as late in the preseason as the Vikings did was a recipe for disaster.
But thanks to Zimmer’s steady presence, the team remained competitive and didn’t implode as it could have.