Why did the stock of Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater fall following the NFL scouting combine? We might have a partial answer now.
The VIkings traded up from the second round to the final choice in Round 1, a move that was hailed by critics for the QB-needy team. But before they were comfortable with the idea of doing that, they had to double check Bridgewater's health and more specifically, a heart-related condition that was detected during medical screenings in Indianapolis.
Vikings GM Rick Spielman said Thursday night that the team brought Bridgewater back after doctors had detected an abnormal heartbeat for him during a routine check. Bridgewater, who spoke with Vikings media late Thursday night, said he was concerned when he first heard about it.
id="yui_3_10_3_2_1399648054447_2520">"I just had an abnormal heartbeat," Bridgewater said. "I think it was 1 percent, or one beat, less than the normal beat. So, I came back up to Minnesota, got the physical, got the EKG and everything, got tested and it came back positive."
Was that the complete reason why Bridgewater went from a candidate for the first overall pick to the final choice of Round 1? Not likely, but it might have scared teams off.
Interestingly, Bridgewater took out an insurance policy to protect against a draft fall and would need to prove that the reason was medical. He still might stand to benefit from it now.
If there's an irony in this situation, it's the Louisville people rave about Bridgewater's metaphorical heart, saying he has been one of the true beacons for the program and one of the more warm, likeable and passionate players the Cardinals have had in recent years.
Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer seemed more than OK with Bridgewater's actual heart, as well as his desire as a football player.
"I said, 'How's your heart?' " Zimmer said. "He said, 'Well, they said it was too big.'
"It was nothing. It was a blip or something."
That might have sold them completely on Bridgewater, who will have a chance to compete for the Vikings' starting position along with Matt Cassel and Christian Ponder, and the Vikings have said that no starting gig will be assured for anyone.
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