Question Of The Week

VT Question of the Week: Which Offensive Player Will Stand Out in 2015?

Last week we talked all about defense, so you can guess where we’re headed this week …

Which Offensive Player will Have the Most Standout Season for the Vikings in 2015?

Lindsey: Teddy Bridgewater
From Day 1, I’ve been a Bridgewater believer. I was pumped when we drafted him, and last season just affirmed his potential. Bridgewater got thrown into the fire last year when Cassel got injured, and the AP fiasco didn’t make things any easier. However, the QB still finished with incredibly solid numbers for a rookie: 2,919 passing yards, a 64.4 percent completion rate and only three fumbles. Bridgewater has a quiet confidence about him, and he’s not easily rattled. He grew his confidence in a rocky 2014 situation, and I expect him to come out ready to rock for 2015.

Andy: Kyle Rudolph
People always talk about how Norv’s offense being so “tight end friendly.” If Rudy can stay healthy for a full season, I think he and Teddy will do some good things together and he’ll make his extension look like a bargain. A lot of variables, but we all believe Rudolph has the ability to be a top-five tight end in the league. It’s just a matter of putting it all together. Plus, we know Teddy loves his tight ends. #Reisner

Brent: Teddy Bridgewater
When I first read the question, my gut was: Teddy Bridgewater. I thought that was too obvious, but after sitting on it for a few hours, I can’t help but circle back to Bridgewater. I can’t wait to see what a full offseason will do for him mentally and physically in terms of development. I think getting Mike Wallace via trade with Miami was a great move because it will ensure that defenses respect our ability to go deep. Not only will that open up the mid-range passes, where Bridgewater excels, but it will also let Adrian Peterson run wild. That’s only if the Vikings remain true to the current narrative of keeping Peterson on the roster. An argument can be made about the season Peterson will seemingly have and his impact on the offense, but ultimately, I think this is Bridgewater’s team and he will be given every opportunity to capitalize on a break-out year.

Carl: Teddy Bridgewater
No surprise here—Teddy Bridgewater is my pick. Bridgewater’s accuracy and pocket awareness is something you just can’t coach.

Bridgewater finished 2014 with a terrific 75.2% Accuracy Percentage under pressure. It was the top mark set by a rookie since Pro Football Focus began recording it in 2007. Despite being pressured on 39.9% of his pass attempts, Bridgewater lead the league in hitting his target when the pocket crumbled. He can’t do it all on his own; he will need a quick strike go-to target to step up. So, my honorable mention answer to this question is, Jarius Wright.

OC Norv Turner suggests Jarius Wright could play a bigger role in the Vikings’ offense following Greg Jennings’ release, per KFAN 103. Turner sees Wright as the potential go-to slot receiver. Wright saw 60 targets last season, a number that is sure to be on the rise in 2015. His 70% completion mark ranked 19th in the NFL among receivers with 500 or more snaps. Wright might have a limited route tree, but he is slippery good with the ball in his hands. His YAC (yards after catch) average of 8.0 ranked 9th in the league last year.

Over the last five games of the season, Wright and Charles Johnson were neck and neck in the stats department. Wright caught 16 receptions for 233 yards and 2 TDs, while Johnson caught 16 balls for 276 yards and 1 TD. If all goes well for Bridgewater, the Vikings could have four or more guys catch 50 plus receptions this year; and that hasn’t happened since 2009 when Brett Favre was slinging it all over the field.

Wow, this makes me want to re-think taking a wide receiver with the 11th pick…

Austin: Kyle Rudolph
In his second season under Norv Turner, Rudolph will finally become the tight end fans have been clamoring for since he signed a 5-year, $40 million contract in 2014. The Vikings added weapons this offseason, and a slimmer, faster Rudolph will have a chance to match or exceed his Pro Bowl numbers in Turner’s tight end-friendly system next season. If he can avoid injury, Rudolph will becomes Teddy Bridgewater’s favorite red zone target and haul in a healthy dose of touchdown catches. 

Adam: Teddy Bridgewater
I think there is really only one option when you eliminate any and all running backs, including Adrian Peterson, based off of uncertainty. That one option is, of course, Teddy Bridgewater. The hope is that Teddy’s rookie season is just the beginning of a long and decorated career, and the expectations are now quite high. For that reason, all eyes will be on Bridgewater in 2015, and he has given us know reason to doubt his ability to play at a high level and continue to improve.

The VT staff proved fairly united on this week’s question, but we’ve added a few more options to the poll to make things interesting. Who do YOU think will be the standout offensive player for 2015?

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Lindsey Young

Lindsey Young (Featured Columnist) is a graduate of University of Northwestern – St. Paul and is an avid Minnesota sports fan[atic]. It’s been argued females don’t know much about sports, but she begs to differ. Her work has been featured on Bleacher Report, KSTP.com, and Fox Sports North. In addition to her work with VT, Lindsey is a contributing writer for Canis Hoopus, runs a bi-monthly fan feature for Timberwolves.com and is a freelance writer for Vikings.com. You can read her blog at Making the Call and follow her on Twitter.

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26 Comments

  1. Bridgewater is the likely candidate here, but as a Vikings fan for life, I look for something to fall apart. Hopefully Bridgewater doesn’t have a sophmore slump, and his poise and maturity might prove to be his best assets. Also, Patterson was the breakout candidate last year, where did that go?

    Damn, I hate the negativity. But, I blame this team for it 🙂

  2. Mnstorm99,
    Don’t be too hard on the Vikings. Even if AP would have played the entire year… I don’t think the Vikings would have won the division or went deep into the playoffs.

    The bright side from last season is Bridgewater proved he is the unquestionable leader of this franchise and the team gained valuable confidence knowing he can win with out Peterson.

    A healthy, fresh and motivated Peterson is also IMO a “plus” takeaway from a season without ALL Day.

    1. Not being hard on them, I am just letting the past dictate my emotions at this point. With that said. I believe in this coaching staff to not ruin a player, like some of the past regimes. I actually maintain quite a bit of hope in this team right now.

      Also, I do not think AP will be on this roster next year. But, your guess is as good as mine. But, even without him, this team could do some interesting things next year.

        1. Atta’ a boy WTF!!! We need to continue the education of some Viking fans;
          IT’S AD, NOT AP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

              1. Nope. He got the name from his Dad when a young boy. He was always running everywhere and he could do it ALL DAY. that’s where the nickname came from

  3. Without a doubt, it’ll be Bridgewater. Can’t imagine what kind of season he will have if we get our O-line fixed and AD in the backfield.

  4. If it ain’t Teddy, we’re all going to be disappointed! Teddy has to be the answer! Don’t you people get it?!
    Ok…I feel better.

  5. What’s the definition 9f insanity again? Doing the same thing over and over bit expecting different results is at least included, I believe. That said, I don’t see, based on several years of data, how anyone could predict Kyle Rudolph having, or being a top 5 TE. There’s just ZERO data to suggest he will be available for more than 8 games, let alone be top 5.

    1. The data would be his first two seasons in which he played 15 and 16 games respectively and scored 12 TDs between the two. He has shown flashes of excellence in previous years but hasn’t had a QB or the health to take full advantage of his talents. Couple his talent, Teddy’s progression and Norv’s TE friendly system and you get the reasoning behind those opinions. The Vikings must feel confident in his ability to stay healthy, or they wouldn’t have given him such a lucrative deal.

  6. That’s 12 TDS in two seasons, 4 yrs ago. I feel they should’ve waited for him to actually breakout before giving him all that money. Last three seasons of data does not suggest any break outs looming.

  7. Don’t get me wrong, I like him and want him to be better. I just think he’s in the ‘I’ll beleive it when I see it’ category. The environment for him to succeed is obviously there.

    1. I would rather have the #27 pick than AD. I think it’s ridiculous to think he’s gonna get to training camp and go from not wanting to be there to being magically swept away with feelings of kittens and puppies down lolipop lane all the way to the playoffs. Let’s make the move. There’s 3 possible workhorse 22 year old RB’s coming out. I personally think Tevin Coleman is the pick of the litter. He had +2000 yard in Indiana, yes Indiana the worst football program in the Big Ten. His game tape is impressive. Out runs National Champion Ohio State. Explosive. We can get him in the 2nd maybe even the 3rd.

  8. Teddy is the man. He’ll be a beast with or without AD in the backfield. Rudolph has a lot to prove which could be very good for our beloved Vikings.

  9. I’ll bet on charles johnson. Sure you could say the quarterback but he’s already out.

    1. I selected C. Johnson as well. Thought is that with our other WR’s and TE’s, Johnson will get the least coverage attention, while he’s still basically “unknown”. I think that’ll change this year in a positive way. With that though, is the extra bonus that the other favorites listed should/could impress as well and then look out.

  10. I used to be an AD nazi too, until the picture of him at his 16th, excuse me, 30th birthday which had AP carved into to the ice bar.

  11. Teddy is the obvious choice,so I’m going to throw another name out there.
    Jarius Wright.With Jennings gone,Jarius should get a load more snaps in the slot and the middle of the field should open up some with a genuine deep threat out wide.

    1. Wright doesn’t want to be a slot receiver. He wants to be and outside receiver. It will be interesting what the Vikings do with with him, play slot or outside, and see how effective he is.

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