Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


How did Bridgewater fare in the cold in college?

Posted by: Matt Vensel under Quarterbacks, Vikings Updated: May 12, 2014 - 4:24 PM

When Teddy Bridgewater first arrived in Louisville in the middle of winter, he started wearing his now infamous glove because of the cold. That begs the question: If Bridgewater thought Kentucky was cold in the middle of winter, how the heck is he going to handle the weather up here?

Some outsiders believe that frigid weather could impact Bridgewater, considering he was said to flutter some passes at his pro day, and that was indoors. When the weather gets cold, footballs can feel like a frozen turkey to quarterbacks without huge hands. And if those quarterbacks don’t throw tight spirals in December -- and hopefully January -- winter wind gusts can unravel those passes.

The Vikings will play their next two seasons outdoors at TCF Bank Stadium, but general manager Rick Spielman said that had no real impact on how the team scouted players.

“The stadium doesn't enter in at all,” Spielman said two days before the draft. “We still have to play outdoors. We still have to play in Chicago, in Green Bay. It doesn't have any bearing at all. We are going to get football players, guys that we can get that can help us win.”

Bridgewater never played a game when the temperature was below freezing in college, according to some quality research from ESPN Stats and Info. The coldest one Bridgewater started was a 34-degree game against Connecticut in 2012. He threw for 331 yards and two touchdowns in the game, which was the one where he broke his left wrist only to play in a key game five days later.

Bridgewater made 11 starts when the temperature was below 50 degrees. He completed 63 percent of his passes in those games with 20 touchdowns and nine interceptions. In his 24 starts when it was 50 degrees or warmer, he completed 71 percent of his passes with 48 touchdowns and 13 picks.

On the surface, that looks like a significant difference due to the weather, but keep in mind that when the weather was warmer Louisville was feasting on small-school cupcakes and the games got bigger and the opponents were more formidable when fall started to turn to winter.

For what it is worth, Bridgewater, who said he will never take the glove off again (I assume he just means professionally and not personally, too), doesn’t sound worried about the weather.

“I think it won't be a big adjustment at all,” he said. “I think we'll be able to use that to our advantage here in Minnesota. It's a mental thing and I'll just block it out and continue to play.”

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