When they're asked for a facet in which Teddy Bridgewater has improved before his second season, Minnesota Vikings coaches and players usually mention how much more assertive the second-year quarterback is this year. That generally starts with Bridgewater's command of the huddle, but it's also starting to show up in how he reads defenses on the field.
Bridgewater is 12-for-14 in the preseason, having thrown for 130 yards without a turnover or a sack. The Vikings have done a solid job protecting Bridgewater so far this preseason, but the quarterback's decisiveness probably deserves some credit.
"He's a very quick decision-maker and I'm always going to relate to when he played at his best that last third of the season," offensive coordinator Norv Turner said. "As I tell you, I'm not a big stat guy, but I don't see us as the 28th-rated passing game in the league last year because over the last six weeks, we were probably a top-10 passing game and that's what we're trying to build on."
Bridgewater showed a better ability to throw receivers open late last season, and he hit Jarius Wright on Saturday with the kind of play he might not have made early last year. Bridgewater used his eyes to hold the middle of the field while Wright worked past two defenders on a crossing route. As soon as Wright cleared cornerback Leonard Johnson and linebacker Bruce Carter, Bridgewater hit him in stride 10 yards down the field, and Wright gained another 16 after the catch. Bridgewater is getting some late round draft attention and is ranked 17th on our QB list.