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5 From No. 5: Bridgewater Helping Vikings Heat Up

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. –Teddy Bridgewater has posted a 123.2 passer rating in the past three games, helping the Vikings win two in a row to set up a matchup with the Packers in Green Bay Sunday that will determine the NFC North.

"It's good to get hot right now," Bridgewater said of the Vikings on Wednesday. "Especially around this time of the year with the playoffs approaching. The coaching staff has been calling great game plans, and it's just been allowing me to play fast."

Bridgewater has completed 70.4 percent of his passes in the past three games, and his rating during the stretch is second only to Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins.

"I just think that we have a good understanding of the things that we can attack other teams with," Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said. "I think he's been more accurate, I think we've protected better for the most part. He's just felt more comfortable lately as we got into the season."

The young quarterback has six touchdown passes and has not thrown one interception against Arizona, Chicago and the New York Giants.

The Vikings have outscored opponents 87-34 in the last two victories. The 38 points in Week 15 were  the highest of all season  until the Vikings topped that mark last week (49 points).

"Coach Zimmer always talks about 'This is when teams become great.' We're trying to do something spectacular around here but we know that it starts with us," Bridgewater said. "I think last year we started finding our identity also around this time of the year."

Bridgewater has played at a higher level in Decembers. He has a 71.5 percent completion rate in the month over the past two seasons.

Here are four other notes from Bridgewater's press conference on Wednesday:

Bridgewater on playing his first game at Lambeau Field:

"I was there last year on the sideline and the atmosphere was crazy. I'm looking forward to playing there the first time in my career and I'm excited."

Bridgewater on Packers QB Aaron Rodgers:

"He just has that 'it' factor. He's a guy who has been one of the best quarterbacks in this league ever since he started playing in this league. You put the tape on and he's in total control. He's in command of his team out there and he's always poised. He never gets rattled or anything like that so that's what I think contributes to his success. He's also a guy who knows how to get the football out of his hands and keep the football in his playmakers hands and not the opponents' hands. "

Bridgewater on completing throws downfield as of late:

"It's just trusting your guys. Landing it in an area where only they can get it, come down with the football. We have guys who can make plays, and I just have to give those guys a chance, and that's something we've been doing these past couple weeks.

Bridgewater on what statistics matter most:


**The 23-year-old quarterback became the Vikings first to throw for more than 3,000 yards in one season since Brett Favre.

Bridgewater was asked if he keeps track of his individual statistics Wednesday.

"I'm human, so yeah I do," Bridgewater said. "But I know that the most important stat is the wins and losses, and right now we have 10 wins and playing for a chance to win a division title. That's the stat that stands out more than any — touchdown, yardage, completion percentage, anything — because you play the game to win. The individual accolades come later, but I'm more focused on winning football games."

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