“It was probably my favorite season by far, even though I didn’t play much,” Bridgewater told ESPN on Monday. “This season challenged my mindset because as bad as I wanted to be out there, playing, being the competitor that I am, I wanted to go to war and go to battle with my guys. I had to be out there in a different aspect. I had to be there for the guys mentally.”
Bridgewater is still working his way back from a crushing knee injury suffered during the 2016 preseason. His only action last season was attempting two passes without a completion and running out the clock in Minnesota’s Week 15 blowout win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
Bridgewater might become a free agent if an independent arbitrator says his rookie contract should carry over into 2018 because of time he spent on the physically unable to perform list last season.
Bridgewater spent the first six weeks of last season on the physically unable to perform list before being medically cleared to return in October. He was Case Keenum‘s backup in Week 10.
Keenum is set to become a free agent following the Vikings’ 38-7 loss in the NFC Championship Game at Philadelphia, and Bridgewater said that he wants to be a starter next season.
In two seasons as Minnesota’s starting quarterback, Bridgewater has completed 64.7 percent of his passes (551 of 851) for 6,150 yards and 28 touchdowns. He also has rushed for 398 yards on 94 attempts with four rushing touchdowns.