Signing Teddy Bridgewater to prep as the backup to Jared Goff comes down to history and results for Lions head coach Dan Campbell
An assistant coach with the New Orleans Saints when Drew Brees broke his thumb in 2019, Campbell witnessed Bridgewater's calm and leadership. Perhaps most important to Campbell, the Saints went 5-0 with Bridgewater in the starter's role
"When you're with somebody for two years, you get a really good feel of what they're capable of and the way they're wired, the way he thinks, and so I've seen him work," Campbell said Tuesday. "I've seen him run the offense, I've seen him in critical moments, I've seen him develop young talent, young receivers. We lost Brees, he goes 5-0. He just, he went in there and he kept the ship afloat and just kept the heading right where we needed it and that means a lot to me. That's all we need. And so to me, that's one of the reasons I wanted him here.
The Lions drafted Tennessee quarterback Hendon Hooker and brought in Nate Sudfeld to play behind Goff. Bridgewater won't play in the preseason opener and might not debut in practice until next week, Campbell said. Hooker is on the non-football injury list due to his ACL tear in college at Tennessee, leaving Sudfeld and Bridgewater to compete for the primary backup role
"Teddy's a pro, he's going to study the heck out of it. He'll pick it up. He's going to pick it up pretty fast, so I'm not concerned," Campbell said
Bridgewater has 65 career starts in nine seasons with a 33-32 record. He went 0-2 as a fill-in starter for the Miami Dolphins last season and was injured twice (concussion, pinkie)
Neither injury should be a hurdle for Bridgewater, Campbell said
"He's got skins on the wall," Campbell said. "He's done it, been it. We need to see if he's still got it, that's all.
--Field Level Medi