Let’s Reid between the lines…
The Vikings suffered a tough loss to Dallas last week. If Minnesota is to keep their playoff hopes alive, million dollar man Kirk Cousins must out duel the bionic legged Teddy Bridgewater.
Vikings fans were rightfully devastated after an unexpected loss to Dallas last week. Cousins put up 300 yards passing, three touchdowns, and no interceptions… but the refs prevented Minnesota from getting the win. Now, the Vikings’ backs are against the wall and this Panthers matchup is suddenly huge.
As for Teddy and the Panthers, their playoff hopes are essentially dead. Teddy has been sidelined for a couple weeks with a knee injury, and he didn’t have the best showing in his most recent game where he threw two interceptions.
As big as this game is for Minnesota, it may be even bigger for Teddy. He’s not the type to have bad blood with the Vikings, but he no doubt wants to get a win and make Spielman question letting him walk. Old narratives aside, he needs to show Carolina he can be their long term starter.
Teddy is a known commodity. He’s way more a game manager than a gunslinger. This sounds like a preferred opponent, but the Vikings underestimated a game manager last week in Andy Dalton and paid the price.
Kirk Cousins doesn’t have any secrets up his sleeve either. He can make big time throws, but he will likely lean on Cook and keep to more conservative passes as long as he can.
The Vikings and the Panthers both have developing defenses, so I don’t expect this phase of the game to be the deciding factor. Rather, it will come down to Teddy vs. Kirk and who plays a better game. Less picks, more yards, and better game management. If both quarterbacks play their hearts out, we’re going to have a great game to watch.
Teddy will always have a place in my heart, and I know thousands of Minnesota fans feel the same. Of course we hope to get a triumphant win over the former signal caller. But if Teddy puts on a fresh pair of gloves and leads the Panthers to a comeback win in the closing two minutes, I’ll wonder if Spielman made the right call to let him go. Regardless of the outcome, I’ll always wish Teddy well.
This game is critical for the Vikings playoff hopes. Kirk Cousins must quiet the Teddy Bridgewater camp and get a resounding home win.