The Minnesota Vikings will be without a quarterback who led the NFL in completion percentage in 2016, but will replace him with a Pro Bowler who has the experience of winning a NFC North title under his belt.
Moving Bradford onto IR cleared the necessary space to add Bridgewater to the roster.
Bradford was the league’s best quarterback in Week 1, as he completed 84 percent of his passes, threw for 346 yards, and three touchdowns in a win against the New Orleans Saints. Unfortunately for the Vikings, Bradford has played just one half of football since because of a knee injury that will ultimately sideline him for the rest of the season. ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported Bradford underwent knee surgery on Tuesday, but at least arthroscopic clean up uncovered no major damage.
Simply returning to the roster is an encouraging sign for Bridgewater, who has spent the last year-and-a-half on injured reserve with a knee injury of his own. That Bridgewater’s return to live game action could come soon says a lot about how he’s recovered from an injury so severe there was concern he might never play again.
Unfortunately, the news isn’t as encouraging for the injury plagued Bradford, who yet again must deal with another injury related setback. Remember, the Vikings traded their first-round pick and fourth-round pick to the Philadelphia Eagles last summer to acquire Bradford.
Case Keenum has played respectably in Bradford’s absence, though. Since taking over for Bradford after halftime of the team’s Week 5 win against the Chicago Bears on Monday Night Football during Mitch Trubisky’s debut, Keenum has led the Vikings to four consecutive wins. In those games, he has completed 66.2 percent of his passes, thrown for 855 yards, four touchdowns (three interceptions), and posted an 84.6 quarterback rating.
Whether Bridgewater takes over for Keenum and starts immediately remains to be seen, but that he’s made it this far makes this one heck of a story.