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Case Keenum Keeping Approach Consistent as Vikings Shuffle QBs

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. –Case Keenum isn't a one-man show.

The quarterback may be the one leading the huddle, but he's ultimately more concerned with the team's success than his own.

Keenum was asked about viewing the Vikings as "his team" after playing in seven straight games – and making six starts – in Purple.

"I don't see it like that," Keenum said. "I see it as I want to do what's best for this team, whatever it is."

The Vikings announced on Wednesday that Teddy Bridgewater has been activated to the 53-man roster more than 400 days since he suffered a devastating knee injury. Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer told Twin Cities media members that Bridgewater will dress for Minnesota's matchup at Washington Sunday, but that Keenum will be the starting quarterback.

"I feel confident in how I'm playing, I feel confident in the guys, in the offense," Keenum said. "I feel confident in the coaches and whatever decisions they make, just like I'm confident in their play calls. I'm going to be the best that I can and help this team win, no matter what the position is."

Keenum said he's excited for Bridgewater and emphasized that he's not preoccupied with whether or not Bridgewater's return to the active roster will affect his own role on the team.

Keenum has consistently prepared as the starter even when Sam Bradford, who was placed on Injured Reserve Wednesday, was week-to-week. He said that hasn't changed.

"If I can keep my mindset the same and stay consistent, then I'm good. It's how I prepare," Keenum said. "I just want to win ball games. I don't care how we do it."

The Vikings are coming out of the bye at 6-2 with the help of Keenum's performance. Through seven games, he is 149-of-233 passing – a 62.8 completion percentage that is the highest of his career – and has recorded 1,610 passing yards, seven touchdowns and three interceptions. His overall passer rating is 88.8, also a career high, and analytics site Pro Football Focus recently noted that Keenum has a passer rating of 120.9 on play-action passes, which is fourth-best among active quarterbacks this season.

Keenum said that Bridgewater has been instrumental in his success thus far, whether from the sidelines or in the meeting room.

"Teddy's been awesome. He really has," Keenum said. "From when I came in the spring, [he helped with] being able to communicate with different guys offensively and just seeing things from a different point of view. During games, he's been a big help. I think it was [against] Tampa Bay when he saw something in the defense and talked about a post throw, and we wound up getting a post throw the very next drive.

"He's a great asset and somebody I'd definitely listen to when he's got some advice," Keenum added.

Whether or not he continues to get the bulk of reps at practice, Keenum said he's accustomed to prepping without them and knows that it won't be an issue.

"As a backup quarterback during the season, you don't get any reps of your actual offense, so you have to be ready to go, no matter what," Keenum said. "That's why mental reps, staying on top of things, knowing what's going on, that's all you have at times."

He further explained his definition of "mental reps," saying he envisions sights and sounds of a game in addition to physically walking through a drop back, visualizing each potential coverage and where he would go with the ball.

"That's what works for me and is what I've done in the past," Keenum said.

As Keenum reflects back over his first stretch in Minnesota and looks ahead to what's in store, he's incredibly happy to be with the Vikings.

"I love the offense that we're running, plays and players. The guys around me do a tremendous job, no matter what we're doing, backs, whether it's protection running the ball or catching it out of the backfield," Keenum said. "From top to bottom, our receiving corps is one of the best I've been around. I trust all of those guys, no matter who is lined up where or wherever they're lined up, whatever they're lined up or whatever route they have called, I trust those guys.

"It's a special group," Keenum added. "And I'm excited to be a part of it."

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