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NOTEBOOK: Rudolph Credits Keenum, Bridgewater for Leadership Roles

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. —If you're looking for a split opinion on the Vikings quarterback situation, Minnesota's locker room isn't the place to be.

Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer announced Wednesday that Case Keenum will start Sunday against the Rams, while Teddy Bridgewater will dress out and serve as the backup.

But those on the Vikings aren't following the storyline with bated breath. Instead, players are focused on getting a win in Week 11 to improve to 8-2.

Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph put it best Wednesday when he brought up the quarterback situation over the past couple of seasons.

Rudolph credited both quarterbacks for all they have done the past few months, whether it's Keenum's strong play on the field or Bridgewater's resiliency to rebound from a devastating injury.

"For us, you can look at our last couple of years, there really is no, 'This is this guy's team.' We've been all over the place with quarterbacks," Rudolph said. "I think one of the things that you do say is Case has done an unbelievable job this year of stepping in and winning games for us.

"That doesn't discredit how well Teddy has done to get back to where he is 15 months after such a significant knee injury," Rudolph added. "I think if you're looking at who's team this is, you're looking at it the wrong way and kind of miss and don't get the appreciation for what both of these guys have done to get to where they are today."

A Handful of 1st-Rounders

The Rams defense ranks 14th overall in yards allowed per game (322.1), is tied for third in points allowed per game (18.0) and leads the NFL with 19 takeaways.

It must be all of that first-round talent.

Los Angeles has five former first-round picks on its defense, including four players the franchise drafted: linebacker Robert Quinn (2010), defensive tackle Michael Brockers (2012), linebacker Alec Ogletree (2013) and defensive tackle Aaron Donald (2014). Rams linebacker Mark Barron was drafted as a safety with Tampa Bay in 2012.

Rudolph said the Vikings expect a stiff test from Los Angeles' defense at U.S. Bank Stadium.

"They've got great guys up front. I can't even count the first-round picks that they have up front," Rudolph said. "They've got a ton of guys that can really get after the quarterback.

"I think the biggest thing that jumps out to you when you watch these guys on tape is how fast they are," Rudolph added. "Everyone knows about Aaron Donald, you look through the linebackers at Ogletree and Barron, those guys can all run. I think that's the biggest thing, how fast their team is on defense."

The Vikings defense ranks fifth overall in yards allowed per game (294.6), is tied for fifth in points allowed per game (18.3).

Minnesota has four first-round picks on its defense: safety Harrison Smith (2012), cornerback Xavier Rhodes (2013), linebacker Anthony Barr (2014) and cornerback Trae Waynes (2015).

61 going on 31 

Zimmer is the NFL's sixth-oldest head coach at 61 years old. He'll go up against the league's youngest head coach Sunday in Sean McVay, who is 31 and in his first season with the Rams.

Zimmer was asked Wednesday if he could have envisioned himself getting his first head coaching gig at such a young age, and provided a humorous response.

"I was trying to figure out where to eat at 30, probably," Zimmer cracked.

Zimmer, who is 33-24 as the Vikings Head Coach, was named Minnesota's leading man at 57 years old.

Injury reports

For the Vikings: Andrew Sendejo (groin/hamstring) did not participate. Mike Remmers (concussion), Everson Griffen (foot), Anthony Harris (hamstring) and Jeremiah Sirles (knee) were limited. Stephen Weatherly (knee) was a full participant.

This will be updated once the Rams injury report is available.

For the Rams: Connor Barwin (knee), John Sullivan (not injury related), Andrew Whitworth (not injury related), Mark Barron (not injury related), Malcolm Brown (knee), Derek Carrier (hamstring), Troy Hill (hamstring), Lamarcus Joyner (hip), Matt Longacre (back) and Rodger Saffold (ankle) did not participate. Robert Quinn (illness) was limited.

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