Teddy Bridgewater's hectic offseason is over, after the Minnesota Vikings made him their quarterback of the future with the No. 32 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. The Vikings traded into the first round with the Seattle Seahawks to select the former Louisville star.
Bridgewater finished his final season at Louisville with considerable hype as perhaps the No. 1 overall player in this year's class. Then after a shaky pro day and some old-fashioned rumor-mongering, his stock fell. The Cardinals apparently have faith in Bridgewater, however, and there's plenty of reason to believe he will reward them handsomely.
Bridgewater played three seasons at Louisville and left the school as one of the best players in school history. The native of Miami, Fla., threw for 3,970 yards, 31 touchdowns and only four interceptions in 2013 to put himself in the Heisman Trophy discussion. There may not have been a more efficient quarterback in FBS than Bridgewater. He finished ninth in the nation at 9.3 yards per attempt, fifth with a 171.1 quarterback rating and first with a 71 percent completion percentage.
SB Nation was bullish on Bridgewater, ranking him as the best quarterback prospect and second-best overall player in the 2014 NFL Draft on its top 200 big board, behind only Jadeveon Clowney. SB Nation's Matthew Fairburn broke down Bridgewater's game in a thorough scouting report:
He's a potential franchise passer due to his mental makeup, advanced pocket presence, accuracy and anticipation when throwing the football. Those knocking Bridgewater as overrated are overthinking things. In addition to his skills, he's proven to be tough as nails and doesn't get overwhelmed in big moments. Both of those traits will be important in the NFL.
Knocks against Bridgewater have centered on pedestrian measurables, from his 6'2 frame to average arm strength. He did himself few favors by turning in a divisive pro day which led to a torrent of negative scouting reports. Bridgewater will be proving experts right or wrong soon enough.
Weight: 214 pounds
Vertical jump: 30 inches
Broad jump: 113 inches
3-cone: 7.17 seconds
20-yard shuttle: 4.20 seconds
Bridgewater's combine numbers did not jump off the page like Johnny Manziel's or Blake Bortles'. Because he didn't throw in Indianapolis, there really wasn't much to take away. A rough pro day in March was perhaps more telling. Bridgewater missed routine throws and threw high on a few attempts to his receivers.