Did the Minnesota Vikings season end yesterday at practice? During a non-contact drill at practice yesterday quarterback Teddy Bridgewater went down. Bridgewater dropped back to pass during a drill, planted his foot and immediately went down. Trainers rushed to his side and began inflating an aircast. After an examination and an MRI Bridgewater was diagnosed with a dislocated knee and a torn ACL. The Vikings reported it as complete tear to his ACL and other structural damage, but there appears to be no nerve or arterial damage. As I’m sure you can guess that this injury ends Bridgewater’s season before it even officially started. Bridgewater was headed into his 3rd season as the Vikings quarterback and with the improvement he made last season there was talk that he’d break out this season. With Bridgewater as there starting quarterback the Vikings where expected to challenge the Green Bay Packers for the top spot in the NFC North. Now you just have to wonder if Minnesota can be a playoff team.
What do the Vikings do at the quarterback position. 36 year old Shaun Hill was Bridgewater’s primary back up. Hill appeared in 3 games for the Vikings last season, but has played in just 46 games over his 10 year career. Hill has been a back up through most of his career, but he did play in 9 games for the then St, Louis Rams in 2014. Hill’s best season was 2010 when he played in 11 games for the Detroit Lions. Hill threw for 2686 yards and 16 touchdowns in those 11 games. Is Hill the guy that the Vikings want as their starting quarterback for 16 games this season? Minnesota us expected to resign quarterback Brad Sorensen if he clears waivers. Sorensen and Joel Stave would play quarterback in the Vikings final pre-season game this Thursday against the Los Angeles Rams. If Hill isn’t going to be the starter for the Vikings who is out there.
Could the Vikings reach out to someone like Michael Vick; who isn’t currently on a NFL roster. There are some teams with depth at the quarterback position; so maybe there’s a trade the Vikings could make. Minnesota attempted to sign Nick Foles, but he chose to sign with the Kansas City Chiefs. Would the Chiefs be willing to deal Foles or their other back up Aaron Murray. Even if the Chiefs moved a quarterback they would still have some depth as they drafted Kevin Hogan from Stanford in the 5th round and he could serve as the 3rd quarterback. The Cleveland Browns are reshaping there roster; so maybe Josh McCown is available. Maybe Josh isn’t the McCown the Vikings go after, but could it be Luke McCown of the New Orleans Saints. The very first name that came up when the injury happen was Colin Kaepernick of the San Francisco 49ers. I’m not sure if the Vikings would want to bring in that kind of a distraction to a contending team and don’t forget Kaepernick has quite a few years left on his deal; so what would you do with him when Bridgewater returns next season. Now the name I haven’t heard that was actually brought up on the Tuesday edition of Sports Time Radio was Mark Sanchez. The Denver Broncos named Trevor Siemian there starer this week, but would they be willing to deal Sanchez. He’s a quality back up quarterback and the Broncos may hold on t him since this is Siemian’s first go round as a starter. So there are some options for the Vikings depending on which way they want to go. It’s just a little disappointing that they have to go this route at all.
If you’ve ever listened to the NASCAR segment on the Sunday edition of Sports Time Radio you’ve heard Chris Olmstead (BeyondtheFlag.com) and I discuss Kyle Larson just about ever week. He always seemed to be a threat to win, but never quite got there. It was getting to the point that people where starting to change there thinking from when will Kyle Larson get his first win to if Kyle Larson will get a win. Well Sunday at the Michigan International Speedway Larson won the Pure Michigan 400 for the 1st win of his Sprint Cup career. On a restart with 9 laps to go Larsen was on the inside of leader Chase Elliott. Both drivers where looking for their first win and both drivers spun their tires on the restart. Larsen got a little more help from veteran Brad Keslowski behind him than Elliott did from Sprint Cup series rookie Ryan Blaney and was able to take the lead. The race stayed green for the final 9 laps and even though Elliott was able to get himself into the 2nd place spot he was unable to challenge Larsen for the win.
The victory gives Larsen not only his first career win, but a spot in The Chase. There are 13 drivers locked into The Chase as long as Chris Buescher can stay in the Top 30 in points. Right now Buescher is just 7 points ahead of 31st place David Ragan. If 13 drivers are locked into The Chase with wins that means there are only three spots for drivers to get in on points. That is of course if we don;t get a first time winner in one of the final two races and that driver grabs a spot in The Chase. As of right now Elliott, Austin Dillion and Jamie McMurray would be the 3 drivers to make The Chase on points. McMurray has a 15 point lead on Ryan Newman for the 16th and final spot in The Chase.
There are just two races left for a driver to win his way into The Chase. This week the Sprint Cup series is at Darlington Raceway for the Bojangles Southern 500. Then on Saturday September 10th the regular season wraps up at Richmond International Raceway for the Federated Auto Parts 400. Could we actually get two more first time winners or will three guys find a way to point themselves into The Chase. The Chase itself actually starts close to home for me. They’ll be at the Chicagoland Speedway for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 on Sunday September 18th.
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