— Andy (@AndyCarlsonShow) November 12, 2017
Teddy Bridgewater was a rising star before he went down with a gruesome knee injury.
On a routine drop back during practice, Bridgewater crumpled to the ground and began holding his leg. Later tests would reveal that he’d torn his ACL, dislocated his knee and suffered other structural damage.
Bridgewater was done for 2016, and missed half of the 2017 season.
But this Sunday he made his triumphant return to the NFL.
Bridgewater isn’t ready to be thrown back out onto the field, but his comeback is nearing completion. The moment wasn’t lost on him, and he became very emotional on the sideline for his return to full uniform.
It remains to be seen what the lasting effects of the injury will be. It’s incredible that Bridgewater is back in uniform and on the sideline, eligible to play if called upon. But one thing is to eligible to play, and another thing is to be capable of playing.
Bridgewater was showing flashes of being a franchise quarterback before he went down. He had a strong arm, good football IQ, and could create with his legs when the pocket collapsed. The knee injury won’t hurt his arm or IQ, but it might make him a more one-dimensional player. Not to mention the psychological effects of sustaining that kind of injury on a routine drop back.
Bridgewater’s story is one of the unheralded feel-good triumphs of the year. He’s back in uniform, but now he needs to prove he’s still capable of contributing.