Vikings practice was cancelled Tuesday following a knee injury to Teddy Bridgewater. Head Coach Mike Zimmer told reporters during a press conference that there is no timetable for his return as it looks to be a season ending injury.
The season is yet to begin and already there are two starting quarterbacks who will miss significant time. Tony Romo suffered a broken bone in his back Thursday after being tackled by Seahawks defensive end Cliff Avril.
It is never a good thing when an ambulance shows up to the stadium as reported by KARE 11 sports reporter Ryan Shaver. Especially one from Hennepin County Medical – a trauma center.
Bridgewater underwent an MRI Tuesday afternoon and the team announced in a release later that evening that he suffered a “complete tear to his ACL and other structural damage.”
Vikings Optimistic For Bridgewater Recovery
In a statement on Tuesday Vikings Director of Sports Medicine and Head Athletic Trainer Eric Sugarman said, “fortunately, there does not appear to be nerve or arterial damage. Surgical repair will be scheduled within the next few days. Although the recovery time will be significant, we expect Teddy to make a full recovery.”
This leaves the once promising defending NFC North champs scrambling to figure out a way to live up to lofty expectations. Bridgewater looked to improve upon his 14 touchdown, 3,231 yard, and 65.3% completion percentage of 2015 that brought the Vikings within a missed field goal of beating the Seahawks in the playoffs.
The young signal caller looked on track in the preseason going 18 of 23 for 253 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. The offseason additions of Alex Boone and Andre Smith bolstered the offensive line. Bridgewater spent training camp trying to improve his deep ball.
Now they will turn to 36 year old back up quarterback Shaun Hill, who originally went to Minnesota undrafted out of the University of Maryland in 2002 before bouncing around the NFL and NFL Europe.
Who’s Next To Be Under Center ?
Shaun Hill may sound familiar to Lions fans as the starter in place of the injured Matthew Stafford in 2010. He’s the quarterback that threw the pass that has since resulted in the “Calvin Johnson Rule.” Behind him is Joel Stave, an undrafted free agent out of Wisconsin.
The Vikings could go out and sign a free agent quarterback like Jimmy Clausen, Tavaris Jackson, or roll the dice on Johnny Manziel. They could also swing a trade for another quarterback like Cleveland’s Josh McCown, San Francisco’s resident national anthem seat warmer Colin Kaepernick, or the butt-fumbler himself Mark Sanchez.
Whatever the Vikings do, they will need to put a warm body in at quarterback that could keep the offense on the field long enough for their vaunted defense to catch their breath. Minnesota’s offense has a plethora of weapons that include Stefon Diggs, Charles Johnson, first round pick Laquon Treadwell, and Mr. All Day Adrian Peterson. A half way competent quarterback should at least give the Vikings a chance to stay competitive in the NFC North.
While it is never good to see a player get injured, Lions fans may be feeling a brighter hope that the division is winnable. No one is actually going to say that out loud without pounding on some nearby wood, but two division games against a good opponent whose starting quarterback is out can only raise expectations for the Lions this year. Maybe it’s time to put “Safety” Dan Orlovsky on the trading block?