Vikings Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater
It's great to get back to work this week, just like last week we want to put the Detroit game behind us. It's great to be able to get back at home this week. It's also Alumni Weekend, it's great to be able to go out there and compete and perform in front of some of those guys who paved the way for us and paved the way for the Vikings franchise. San Diego is a very important game this week, we're ready.
Q: How do you maintain that sense of urgency that you talked about?
A: It's simple, the 24-hour rule. You put Detroit in the past, you have to have that same mindset heading into the San Diego game, you want to start fast, convert 3rd downs and do things like that.
Q: Are there certain things that you don't want to forget from those games, things you can improve on or change?
A: Definitely. Every time you watch the tape there's something that you could have done, something you can improve on. Like I said, we want to put the Detroit game in the past and focus on San Diego.
Q: Have you had an admiration for the way Philip Rivers plays?
A: Definitely, Philip [Rivers], he's a guy I've seen a bunch of tape on. Coach [Norv] Turner was able to coach him early in his career. I've seen numerous throws that Philip Rivers makes, he's a great quarterback and he's one of the best quarterbacks in this league.
Q: Who do you think you're most similar to as a quarterback in the NFL?
A: That's a tough question. Because everyone has their own, everyone is different, everyone has something that they bring to the table. I watched Peyton Manning, whether he's beating you at the line of scrimmage, it's a chess match. Aaron Rodgers, he's making all of the throws. Tom Brady, he's a mastermind, he's making all of the throws also, he's calm in the pocket. I just try to take different things that those guys do well and try to apply it to my game. That's what makes me different, also.
Q: How do you look back on the shovel pass to Adrian Peterson, was it all just read and react?
A: Yeah, it's just off of instinct. You try to avoid negative yards and just trying to keep the play alive, trying to avoid a sack and keep the play alive. Adrian [Peterson] did a great job once the ball was in his hands of just making something happen.
Q: Can you describe the difference between when Adrian Peterson is in rhythm early in the game and when he's not and how it impacts you as a quarterback?
A: I've only been able to play in two football games with Adrian [Peterson]. You can't really judge him off of the first game because he was coming in without playing in the preseason. We knew that it was going to take some time for him to get going and it's going to take some time for us to get going as a team. Like I said, we put the San Francisco game behind us, Adrian came out, he performed well for us against Detroit. That's what we expect from Adrian, he's a guy that's done tremendous things in this league and is going to continue to do even bigger things for us. Whether he's hot, it makes the game easier. I'm just glad to have him back there.
Q: When you compare the first few starts last season to where you are now, what's been the biggest difference?
A: The biggest difference is I'm just playing faster, thinking less. Allowing the game to come to me, I'm not trying to force throws, I'm not trying to be too perfect. Last year I tended to overthink things and always wanted to be right. Sometimes you just have to go out there and play the game for itself. I think that's something that I'm doing a better job of doing.
Q: In the first two games have you seen many opportunities downfield that you've missed?
A: There are definitely some opportunities out there. There are going to be opportunities that come up throughout the course of the game, we want to make sure that we take advantage of them. When those opportunities present themselves we want to make sure that we hit them. If a defense blows an assignment, sometimes your progression doesn't take you to the guy who is going to end up open on a busted coverage. Like I said, when those opportunities present themselves we want to make sure that we take advantage of them.
Q: Do any of your receivers remind you of that?
A: Definitely, and sometimes after the ball is thrown I'll look at a guy and I'll glance the field just to see what area of the field was open and things like that.
Q: Do you remember anything from when Adrian Peterson set the single-game rushing record against the Chargers?
A: I actually don't even know what happened last time that Adrian [Peterson] had a big game against San Diego, but I can put the tape on and just watch him run. We're excited heading into this game, we know that it's going to take every single one of those guys in that locker room over there to come out with the victory this week. We have to continue to just work extremely hard, execute the game plan this week and just start fast.
Q: Did you watch Adrian Peterson at all during his rookie year?
A: I don't even know how old I was Adrian's rookie year.
Q: It was 2007, do you remember him taking the league by storm?
A: I don't even know if I was following football in 2007, NFL football. Adrian's name is a name that I knew of when he was at Oklahoma, but I wasn't able to follow him early in his career. I know that he's done some great things here in Minnesota, he's done some great things in this league and he's going to continue to do more great things.
Q: Does it take a while to find a comfort level with a new center in Joe Berger?
A: I don't think so. The good thing about Joe [Berger] is he's a guy who has some playing time. He has Sully [John Sullivan] starting in front of him and things like that. He's a guy who tries to perfect his craft, tries to master whether it's calls in the run game or the pass game and it's basically like I have another Sully in front of me. Sully has been doing a great job of just coaching him up ever since the OTAs because you never know how the season is going to play out. Joe has been doing a great job for us and that entire offensive line, those guys, we know we had a big task coming in last week and those guys did a great job of just stepping up.
Q: How much more comfortable did you feel against Detroit than you did against San Francisco with the confidence of the offensive line?
A: I felt very comfortable. Those guys spent a lot of time of just breaking down film on Detroit, we expect that from those guys. Those guys started fast, you put the tape on, you watch them, we we're running the football we had lineman down the field getting to the second level, blocking linebackers, driving defensive linemen down the field. That's what we like to see.
Q: What percentage of the plays that you ran last week did you have to audible out of?
A: I can't recall. Throughout the course of the game, things are going to come up and we just have to play the game as it goes.
Q: People in San Diego would always talk about how mellow Norv Turner was, does that surprise you with how intense you've seen him?
A: Definitely. It definitely surprised me. I know one thing, we have a great coordinator in Coach [Norv] Turner. This coaching staff, the offensive coaching staff has been doing a great job and it starts with Coach Zimmer. He sets the message, the coordinators, they do a great job of relaying the message to the position coaches and the position coaches do a great job of getting the message across to the players. We're glad to have Coach Turner and I'm glad to have him as a coordinator.
Q: What has been you progression from a rookie to year two and your relationship with him?
A: Our relationship is only getting better. I think he's the reason that I'm in Minnesota right now. I think he's probably the one who vouched for me to be here. Coach Turner, I appreciate everything that he's doing for us. Every week we come in to work, we know that this game plan is going to be one that's put together for us to go out there execute and do the things that we do best.
Q: Does Coach Turner make you laugh?
A: Oh yeah, definitely, definitely. He has some jokes that he shares, he has some stories. He'll come in and talk about a play that happened back when he was with the Dallas Cowboys and Michael Irvin and Deion Sanders, those guys going at in practice and things like that. He has a ton of wisdom, a ton of stories that he shares with us.
Q: Has it been eye-opening to see Coach Norv Turner's coaching style?
A: I actually like that, because he's one of those guys, he has a great personality, it makes you appreciate him as a coach. Like I said, we're glad to have him here as our coordinator.
Q: What jumped out to you when watching tape on the Chargers defense?
A: Those guys, I think they're second in the league in turnovers right now. They get to the football. They have some playmakers on that team. Those guys execute and run that defense to perfection. We know it's going to be a challenge for us. Those guys do a great job on the back end in coverage and things like that, not giving up too many big plays. We know it's going to be a challenge for us.
Q: How would you compare Eric Weddle to Harrison Smith?
A: You can't compare those guys. Both of those guys are special players. Both of those are two of the top guys at their position. You put the tape on, [Eric] Weddle, he is everywhere. He's flying across the field, making tackles, coming from 20-yards downfield in coverage. He has a nose for the football. Harrison [Smith], he's the same, but you just can't compare those guys. Two different systems, two different schemes.