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Teddy Bridgewater may not be a free agent in 2018

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Even though the Vikings didn’t pick up the final year of quarterback Teddy Bridgewater’s rookie contract, he may still be under contract in 2018.

By not exercising the option that would extend the deal from four years to five, the Vikings allow Bridgewater to become an unrestricted free agent in 2018. But there’s a catch, hiding in plain sight.

Says Article 20, Section 2 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement: “Any player placed on a Physically Unable to Perform list (‘PUP’) will be paid his full Paragraph 5 Salary while on such list. His contract will not be tolled for the period he is on PUP, except in the last year of his contract, when the player’s contract will be tolled if he is still physically unable to perform his football services as of the sixth regular season game.” (Emphasis added.)

Contrary to a report that Bridgewater would have to miss the whole season to have his contract tolled, this means that the contract will toll only if the player is on the PUP list as of the sixth regular-season game. Which also means, as a practical matter, that if he’s still on PUP when the regular season begins, the contract will toll.

Players on the PUP list as of Week One must spend six weeks there. Since the Vikings’ by happens in Week Nine this year, Bridgewater would miss six games if he’s on PUP to start the season.

If the Vikings had picked up the option, tolling couldn’t have happened because Bridgewater wouldn’t have been in the last year of his deal. By not picking up the option, the highlighted sentence of Article 20, Section 2 becomes highly relevant.

On Friday’s PFT Live, Vikings G.M. Rick Spielman was asked whether the contract could toll based on Article 20, Section 2. He provided an evasive answer that nevertheless said everything he needed to say.

“We know the rule very well,” Spielman said. “We’ve talked to the Management Council, we understand everything that’s involved with it, but again it’s something from a contractual standpoint that I’d rather not comment on. But there are specific rules there, and we’re quite aware of what the rules are.”

Here’s what they know: If Bridgewater won’t be able to exit the PUP list by the sixth game of the regular season, he’ll be a Viking in 2018, at the same $1.354 million he’ll earn in 2017.

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40 Responses to “Teddy Bridgewater may not be a free agent in 2018”
  1. tjacks7 says: May 5, 2017 12:03 PM

    And the rich get richer.

  2. Matt from San Diego says: May 5, 2017 12:08 PM

    We already knew this.

    Maybe if both networks isn’t cut to commercial every single one of the Vikings draft picks they would have the time to gloss over the team talking points.

    This is an old story national media keeps dropping because they don’t have their eye on the ball.

  3. taintedsaints2009 says: May 5, 2017 12:10 PM

    It be nice if he could play again but I just hope he can walk normally.

  4. QB Film Room says: May 5, 2017 12:11 PM

    So this means they will allow Bradford to Play out the last year of his deal which means once again that 2017 is a prove it year for Bradford yet again… but don’t feel too bad for him, he has been highly paid from 2015-2016.

  5. whatjusthapped says: May 5, 2017 12:12 PM

    Its a moot point, Bridgewater will be lucky to walk again, playing pro football (using that term lightly, after all, this is the Minnesota Vikings we are talking about) is pretty much out of the question.

  6. The Phantom Stranger says: May 5, 2017 12:17 PM

    This is a good thing for everybody. We all expected Teddy to begin the season on the PUP. If he were a free agent in 2018, what kind of contract could he get after probably not playing for most or all of two seasons? Give him another year to prove he’s healthy and he’ll be able to get a fair contract in 2019.

  7. harrisonhits2 says: May 5, 2017 12:21 PM

    “And the rich get richer.”

    Lol rich? The Vikings are the paupers of the NFCN

  8. bondlake says: May 5, 2017 12:24 PM

    Ohhhhh – – – who cares?

  9. therealraider says: May 5, 2017 12:25 PM

    The worse thing that can happen to a franchise QB is to be drafted last in the first round. Based on the rookie wage scale and the 5th year option scale compared to the franchise tag. A QB will make more money as a high second round pick over their first 5 years than had they been drafted 11-31.

  10. aj66shanghai says: May 5, 2017 12:26 PM

    1. Pay him all you want, he won’t play another snap in the NFL

    2. If the team cuts him before week 6, does it nullify all the rest?

  11. averagepete says: May 5, 2017 12:26 PM

    Bridgewater’s done.

  12. dawoger says: May 5, 2017 12:27 PM

    Well, well, well, isn’t that predictable. Who would have guessed the weasel faced speildolt would give an “evasive answer”? To think he had the gall to claim in his interview with MF that his decision about Teddy “was all about the health.” The health of what, the cap space?

  13. maverick2560 says: May 5, 2017 12:29 PM

    People always believe that these players get all the money under their
    contract. The truth is they usually get no where near the total.
    That is only true in Baseball, Hockey, NBA.
    NFL players have by far the weakest union and the least leverage. With
    the requirement of playing for the NCAA,many NFL players are essentially locked up for a peroid of at least 6 years.
    In baseball, hockey and essentially basketball ( 1 year waiting list )
    an athlete can profit from his unique talents.
    In football a young man must pretend to be a student,go to class,
    participate in football activities ( 40-60 hours a week during season,
    20 hours off season ) for essentially slave wages.
    One can argue they make an enormous amount of money but statistically that is at best for 4-6 years. Many never get to truly market
    their true market value because of the draft rules and free agency rules.

  14. pack88 says: May 5, 2017 12:38 PM

    The ball is not strictly in the Vikings court. Should Bridgewater feel he is close to ready at the start of the regular season he could file a grievance and force the Vikings hand.
    If as many speculate he will not play again he will be happy to make several million dollars drinking powerade in the training room while thinking about the future but if he is almost ready he can easily win his release or an active roster spot !

  15. tjacks7 says: May 5, 2017 12:43 PM

    I take it the people saying Bridgewater will be lucky to walk again aren’t medical professionals or have even seen the videos of him jogging, jumping and throwing. He’s been walking for a long time folks, try to do a little research before you look like a clown.

  16. arianil985 says: May 5, 2017 12:44 PM

    If I were Teddy I’d just walk away right now. Why can’t he?

    Oh, yeah.

  17. ariani1985 says: May 5, 2017 12:44 PM

    dom capers is sucking his thumb in the corner with the news!

  18. gripless says: May 5, 2017 12:46 PM

    How do you hide in plain site?

    What the hell!

  19. akira1971 says: May 5, 2017 1:15 PM

    maverick2560 says:

    In football a young man must pretend to be a student, go to class, participate in football activities ( 40-60 hours a week during season, 20 hours off season ) for essentially slave wages.
    ———-

    College players have a CHOICE of not playing football and just pay their own way through their college education. Don’t like the terms of the scholarship? Get a real job and pay for your own tuition like 99.8% of the student body.

  20. snowlock2013 says: May 5, 2017 1:27 PM

    Just delaying the inevitable

  21. DolFan says: May 5, 2017 1:29 PM

    Teddy was waking without crouches back in November. Last I heard (few months ago), his rehab is up to running in a pool to keep weight off of of it.

    Unlikely that he will be ready for week 1, but I can see him being ready mid season if there is a dire need.

  22. lingsun54 says: May 5, 2017 1:34 PM

    Bridgewater will still get another $1.3 million this year whether he plays or not. He got $6.8 million over 4 years. He won’t be rich but he wouldn’t have to work while getting his college degree either.

  23. viffty says: May 5, 2017 1:40 PM

    I really like Teddy but I don’t believe he will ever come back from this horrific injury. I truly hope I am wrong, though, as he was quite a good QB before this happened.

  24. kissmysandwich says: May 5, 2017 2:03 PM

    Brzezinski is a contract and cap genius, which is why the Vikings never have cap issues.

  25. wiscoregon says: May 5, 2017 2:13 PM

    Why would they want him if healthy. In his first season 12 touchdowns was the ceiling. The next year he went down to 9 touchdowns! You can say whatever you want about him being a nice guy, but I sure wouldn’t want him running my team.

  26. teal379 says: May 5, 2017 2:37 PM

    kissmysandwich says:
    May 5, 2017 2:03 PM
    Brzezinski is a contract and cap genius, which is why the Vikings never have cap issues.

    ——————————-

    Not having good players worth max contracts at the most important positions on the field helps too.

  27. intrafinesse says: May 5, 2017 3:17 PM

    >>Bridgewater will still get another $1.3 million this year whether he plays or not. He got $6.8 million over 4 years. He won’t be rich but he wouldn’t have to work while getting his college degree either.

    If after taxes he has > 4 Million and can never play again, at 3% can he live comfortably on > 120K per year?

    Lets see how he is at the end of 2017.
    There is a QB shortage, and if Mike Glennon can get 14.5, if Teddy is healthy, he’ll get paid.
    Either the Vikes keep him, or he goes free agent eventually.

  28. The Phantom Stranger says: May 5, 2017 3:19 PM

    @wiscregon –

    You might want to learn the difference between touchdowns and interceptions on the stat sheet before you make your brilliant comments.

  29. sb13blog says: May 5, 2017 3:25 PM

    ‘ So this means they will allow Bradford to Play out the last year of his deal which means once again that 2017 is a prove it year for Bradford yet again… but don’t feel too bad for him, he has been highly paid from 2015-2016. ‘

    ——————————

    Being well paid isn’t a recent thing for Bradford. He’s made nearly $100M since he’s been in the league in a very so-so career.

  30. gregbeau says: May 5, 2017 3:25 PM

    I don’t understand the terminology used in the story.

    Could someone explain it in plain English?

  31. clayjtitan66 says: May 5, 2017 3:30 PM

    Who wants a player who has trouble walking on uneven ground?

  32. wtfru2 says: May 5, 2017 3:34 PM

    I don’t even want to read this junk anymore. There are more uneducated, ignorant, Packer trolls on the Viking sites than there are Vikings. The one called dawoger must just sit in his wheelchair waiting for a viking article to pop. No one that is normal or working has the time he does, day and night, to do this. It must make him feel better about himself. This is a pretty innocuous post so if it gets cut, I’ll know that he is actually one of Florio’s staff.

  33. wiscoregon says: May 5, 2017 3:39 PM

    The Phantom Stranger says:
    May 5, 2017 3:19 PM

    @wiscregon –

    You might want to learn the difference between touchdowns and interceptions on the stat sheet before you make your brilliant comment.

    You are right. Doesn’t change the fact so was I. 14 shouldn’t be changing any minds.

  34. stellarperformance says: May 5, 2017 3:43 PM

    ariani1985 says:
    May 5, 2017 12:44 PM
    dom capers is sucking his thumb in the corner with the news!
    ///////////////////////////////////

    arianal…….be glad stupid isn’t painful.

  35. ronfromnm says: May 5, 2017 4:00 PM

    Is this a path for other teams who declined the 5th year options? The Bills turned down Sammy Watkins’ option and he has had a lingering foot injury. Could the Bills put him on PUP to start the year in order to have him for the full 2018 season?

  36. bullcharger says: May 5, 2017 4:33 PM

    Bridgewater will still get another $1.3 million this year whether he plays or not. He got $6.8 million over 4 years. He won’t be rich but he wouldn’t have to work while getting his college degree either.

    —————

    In what world is that not rich? 8 million dollars? 200K a year for 40 years is 8 million dollars. That would be equivalent of earning in the top 2% of money earners for an entire career.

    and getting it all at once puts him in a position to live off the investment income which would be 240K a year conservatively.

    He’s rich.

  37. ihavepriors says: May 5, 2017 5:54 PM

    This guy is major damaged goods. Most ACL’s are healed in 6-8 months. Tiny aint coming back. Get over it.

  38. navyvike says: May 5, 2017 10:43 PM

    It doesn’t matter whether Bradford or Teddy is behind center Packer trolls, Vikings defense is not made out of glass and will kick _ss! Add a revamped run game with upgraded and healthy (we hope) protection the Vikes are perched to take the NFCN again. Enjoy your turpentine this weekend. SKOLOL

  39. lobzila says: May 6, 2017 3:09 AM

    I hope the young man plays the game again. But after looking at how horrific that injury is, my first hope is that he can walk without a limp. Everything I read states that this was a freak accident. Talent wise, he was good enough to be a starting QB in the NFL, and very few accomplish that. Good luck Teddy in your future, this former Charger fan wishes you the best whatever it may be.

  40. lambeaudungbarn says: May 7, 2017 2:15 AM

    Give Bradford a 5 year deal, he is a decent QB if healthy, and the hits he took last year have proven to me he is not going to roll over. During that 5 years take some flyers on 2nd-4th round QB’s. This is where most of the great arms have come from with some exceptions. Being forced to take a 1st round QB every 4 or 5 years will NEVER get it done.
    Most early 1st round QB’s end up flopping, Luck is one of the only exceptions I can remember.

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