The Minnesota Vikings not only will activate quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to the 53-man roster this week, but the team is discussing the probability that veteran Sam Bradford will be placed on injured reserve, according to team sources. A final decision has not been made yet on Bradford.
Bradford was not in the team building on Tuesday, which is the norm for quarterbacks even on an “off” day, because he decided to allow Dr. James Andrews to further examine his injured left knee. The examination by Dr. Andrews could result in an exploratory arthroscopic procedure to determine if there a problem that has not been revealed on an MRI, as ESPN has previously reported.
Bradford’s knee joint and structure has been previously deemed stable by team orthopedic doctors, as well as Dr. Andrews, who repaired the quarterback’s two prior ACL tears in 2013 and 2014.
Bridgewater has passed all the medical hurdles necessary to return to the active roster, a decision the team is required to make by Wednesday under the rules of his status on the physically unable to perform list because he began practicing three weeks ago, the sources said.
Bridgewater has looked sharp in running scout-team drills against the first-team defense, according to sources. He is expected to serve as the backup to starter Case Keenum on Sunday, but the team is optimistic that Bridgewater can effectively become the starter again when it is necessary.
With Bridgewater and Bradford out, Kyle Sloter has been the backup quarterback. The Vikings do not want to risk losing him, according to a source.
Bridgewater dislocated his knee on Aug. 28, 2016, while running a noncontact play in practice. That led to the Vikings’ trade for Bradford in which they dealt first and fourth round draft picks to the Philadelphia Eagles. Bradford played a relatively injury-free season in 2016 despite the team’s pass protection problems.
Bradford then opened the 2017 season in spectacular fashion on Monday Night Football, throwing for 346 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Vikings to a 29-19 victory over the New Orleans Saints. However, he woke up the following day experiencing significant pain and swelling in his left knee. He has played in only one game since, against the Bears on Oct. 9 in which he had to be removed because of the pain.
Bradford has sought other opinions and alternative Regenokine treatments in hopes of reducing the pain but without satisfaction.