If you were critical of the Minnesota Vikings’ trade for Sam Bradford (yes, I’m included on that list), the Vikings would like a word with you.
The Vikings have the look of a legitimate Super Bowl contender, and while Bradford isn’t driving that bus, he’s a key part. The Vikings eviscerated the Houston Texans 31-13 on Sunday to improve to 5-0. The Vikings defense has jumped up into the Seattle Seahawks/Denver Broncos level and is among the NFL’s best, and that’s the main reason the Vikings are undefeated. But the offense has been pretty good, too.
Bradford isn’t playing at an MVP level or anything, but he’s been efficient and to this point worth the trade. That’s pretty impressive considering the Vikings traded for him about a week before the season started. He had almost no time to learn a new offense and about his new teammates. But he has played well and did again on Sunday, completing 22-of-30 passes for 271 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Bradford has had to do more in the offense because of injuries elsewhere. Adrian Peterson went down in Week 2 to a knee injury. On Sunday, top receiver Stefon Diggs was out, too. It doesn’t matter. Guys like Adam Thielen and Cordarrelle Patterson caught touchdowns from Bradford. It was Patterson’s first touchdown since Week 7 of 2014.
The Vikings paid a steep price for Bradford. They sent a first-round pick and a conditional fourth-round pick (which could creep higher) to Philadelphia for Bradford, a former first-round pick who had been a disappointment in his NFL career. Bradford has played better this season than he ever has before. The Vikings are 5-0, in first place in the NFC North and are a title contender.
Nobody in Minnesota is regretting that trade.
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