Vikings trade back into 1st round, select QB Teddy Bridgewater
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EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- When the nation scoffed at Teddy Bridgewater's Pro Day, the Minnesota Vikings wanted to see it again.
"As soon as he got coached, those things got corrected and corrected quickly," General Manager Rick Spielman said.
The Vikings needed to make the move to No. 32 to pick up a quarterback knowing the Houston Texans at No. 33 were likely going that route to open Friday. The Texans took defensive end Jadeveon Clowney with the top overall pick.
The Vikings swapped their second (40th) and fourth round (108th) picks for the Seattle Seahawks' 32nd overall pick in the first round. Bridgewater, a junior out of Louisville, was the third and final quarterback taken in the first round after Blake Bortles (3rd) and Johnny Manziel (22nd) were drafted.
The process began months ago when the Vikings began scheduling meetings and workouts with about 10 quarterback prospects in preparation of the draft. Bridgewater said he met with the Vikings four or five times, more than any other team, which also included the private workout that apparently won Minnesota over.
First-year coach Mike Zimmer wasn't at the private workout in Florida after Bridgewater's Pro Day, but he got enough of an impression from Minnesota's coaches to know that he's the guy.
"They were drooling when they came back," Zimmer said.
The biggest difference between his Pro Day and the private workout?
"For one, I wore my glove," Bridgewater said.
With Matt Cassel signed to a two-year, $10 million deal in March, the Vikings plan to ease Bridgewater along. Unlike the NFL trend, the Vikings don't plan on forcing their rookie passer into action.
The Vikings now have two picks, both third rounders, on Friday with the 72nd and 96th selections.
Minnesota selected linebacker Anthony Barr with the ninth overall pick.