A windy, rainy, lightning-delayed night game challenged Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who shrugged it all off by saying, “We practice in the rain, hail, sleet, snow, whatever the condition is. We still did a good job of throwing the ball around the park.”
The Vikings beat the Raiders 20-12 in a preseason game at TCF Bank Stadium on Saturday night, and Bridgewater’s numbers were good. He was 10 of 14 for 89 yards and a 10-yard TD pass to Charles Johnson, and his .786 completion percentage through three games is the best in Vikings’ preseason history.
Still, Bridgewater wasn’t overly sharp during his first-half stint, missing a couple of open receivers and forcing a couple of teammates to make twisting catches.
“Teddy might have started a little slow,” said coach Mike Zimmer. “He completed balls, but he wasn’t as accurate as he normally is early … then he settled down.”
“There were some issues with Mother Nature, but that’s something that we had to get through,” Bridgewater said.
The Vikings are still patching together their offensive line, with T.J. Clemmings getting the start at right tackle for Phil Loadholt (out for the season after Achilles’ tendon surgery) and Joe Berger stepping in at center for John Sullivan (out because of spasms).
“T.J. did a good job for us,” Bridgewater said. “I don’ think we had any sacks for the first unit. There was one issue, they gave us a look we weren’t ready for, but we’d be ready in the regular season.”
“We want to develop a winning attitude, and what better way to do that than in the preseason?”
Backup quarterback Shaun Hill was 11 for 17 for 82 yards and a touchdown; he threw one interception on a play where receiver Cordarrelle Patterson broke off his route. Taylor Heinecke was 0-for-4 and Mike Kafka 2-for-2 as the second half dragged to a merciful close.
As for Bridgewater’s completion percentage, he said, “No one is going to be perfect. Something always comes up — the receiver could slip on a route or you can get hit throwing the ball, but we try to aim for 70 percent. In the quarterback room, that’s one of our goals. We take pride in completion percentage we take pride in taking care of the football and commanding the offense.”