The Bears aren’t a particularly tough defense anymore, but Teddy Bridgewater’s destruction of them this afternoon warrants some attention. The Vikings beat Chicago 38-17 at home today, and Bridgewater went 17/20 with four passing touchdowns and another on the ground. This line gives him the third-best completion percentage in Vikings history, and he’s matched his touchdown total from Weeks 8-14 with his one game today.
It was an even more impressive performance given that Adrian Peterson went to the locker room in the first half for a while with an ankle injury. With Stefon Diggs and Jerick McKinnon emerging as reliable wideout threats, the Vikings are more balanced than they’ve been for most of Peterson’s career. For a team that relies on him to carry the load, being able to threaten with the pass is going to be crucial for their playoff hopes. They’ll never be a pass-first team (they average the fourth-lowest pass percentage) but for a team with such a generational running back, all they need is a quarterback who won’t turn the rock over and can threaten secondaries with the deep ball.
This is nearly as good of a bounce back game as he could possibly have after that crushing loss to Arizona last Thursday, and the Vikings kind of feel like a sneakily good team. It’s already abundantly clear that the Vikings can at least hang with the Cardinals, even if they’re not quite at that level. Their rushing defense will need to solidify for the team to make any kind of playoff run, but they at least look like a fun, semi-balanced team on offense.
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