Saturday night’s Preseason game between the Minnesota Vikings and my beloved Arizona Cardinals was probably the most exciting Preseason game ever. A common trend during Preseason is high scoring games and blowouts. This one went down to the wire. It produced crazy touchdowns off of fumbles and game winning drives. The Vikings ended up winning, 30-28, on a game-winning touchdown pass from Teddy Bridgewater.
That’s leads into the discussion in this column. I believe that the Vikings need to reconsider Matt Cassel, who did play the whole first half of Saturday’s game. Cassel played great, no doubt. He put up 153 yards and one TD, with at 125.3 rating. Many suggest that Cassel has built a burden to high for Bridgewater to catch. He has the experience and leadership. It’s matter of the Vikings taking the chance on Bridgewater starting Week 1. Once you play a rookie QB, you really can’t bench him. Bridgewater put up 177 yard and 2 TD performance Saturday, with a rating of 136.9. The real highlight was the final drive. The Vikings were down to Cardinals after they scored a weird touchdown with 1:11 left. Bridgewater led the Vikings down the field, with his rocket arm and his receivers getting out of bounds. He ended up throwing the winning pass with 18 seconds left. It was really impressive, and made many people hop on Bridgewater.
But then, a great point was made by Peter Schrager of Fox Sports, one that kind of killed the spirit though.
What’s my take? Well, I think the Vikings need to wait until after their 3rd preseason game against the Chiefs. At this point, Cassel has the job. If the Vikings want to see Bridgewater try to overtake him, start him Saturday. I don’t think the Vikings feel this way though. They want to start the veteran Week 1, watch him collapse, then play Bridgewater.
It no doubt that Bridgewater will see action against the Chiefs. I believe he earned a preseason start. This would show what he is like against a 1st team defense.
It funny how Teddy was supposed to be the No.1 overall pick by the Texans in May. Then the extra month kicked in, and people started to pick him apart. He had a bad combine and a worse Pro Day. He blamed it on not wearing a glove. Anyways, the Vikings need to take some more time on this. I really believe Bridgewater could start Week 1. If he continues to play at this level, especially against a 1st team defense, Matt Cassel could be on the bench.
It’s most likely Matt Cassel starts Week 1 against St. Louis, collapses by Week 7, and they start Bridgewater Week 8 at Buffalo. The Vikings have a horrid stretch after playing the Rams, with Patriots, Saints, Falcons, Packers and Lions in the following weeks. It very possible they start 1-5, or even 0-6.
That’s the worse case at QB. This offense has many weapons. They just need a QB who can play well enough. The defense is shaky, but with Mike Zimmer, a former defensive coordinator, it should improve. Again, the start to the season will be rough. They could improve, but no more than eight wins for this team.
More NFL Preview To Come…