When Houston Texans quarterback DeShaun Watson went down with a season-ending ACL injury, there were hundreds of players around the league who could painfully relate. One of those was Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who returned to practice from a 14-month absence just before Watson was hurt.
Bridgewater’s knee injury was more severe, a dislocation with multiple ligament tears, but the sentiment remained the same.
“He comes from a background where he had to overcome obstacles his entire life. Nothing ever comes easy, and I know that he’s going to attack his rehab full speed,” Bridgewater said.
Bridgewater has plenty of teammates in his locker room to try to encourage and inspire as well, including rookie running back Dalvin Cook, who tore his ACL six weeks ago.
“Dalvin, he lives in the neighborhood. This right here is called the neighborhood,” Bridgewater said, adding: “He can lean on me, and I give him different advice and I know what it takes with having someone around who keeps you lifted.”
As for Watson, Bridgewater said he planned to contact him directly soon, but immediately after Watson’s injury last week he limited his communication to Twitter. That’s because Bridgewater received what he estimated at 800 text messages after he was hurt on Aug. 30, 2016. Bridgewater said this week he needed three months to finish responding to all of them.