Teddy Bridgewater Becoming the Man in Charge in Virtual Meetings

Schuyler Callihan

As new head coach Matt Rhule looks to bring change to the Carolina Panthers organization, he needs guys that bring in a winning attitude and quarterback Teddy Bridgewater has every bit of that trait within him.

Rewinding back to Bridgewater's time at the University of Louisville, he went 26-8 and 2-1 in bowls as the starting quarterback. In one of those bowl games, he led the Cardinals past the Florida Gators in the Sugar Bowl by a 33-23 score. Since entering the NFL, the winning trend has not stopped. He currently owns a 22-12 record as an NFL starter, including an amazing 5-0 stretch last year with the Saints when filling in for an injured Drew Brees. 

When a quarterback has so much history of being a winner, usually one of their best traits turns out to be leadership. Last week, Panthers offensive coordinator Joe Brady met with the media via Zoom and talked about the leadership that he possesses and even mentioned how he has taken over as the "boss" at times.

"He makes everybody better. He lights up the room, he's intelligent. His football IQ is through the roof," Brady stated. "When we have a day like this, we're like Teddy, you're running the meetings. I think that's critical having a guy that understands a good amount of the system and what we're doing, but also has an idea of football and being able to explain it and teach it to others."

During unprecedented times likes these, it's a great sign to see Bridgewater not shying away from taking the reigns of the offense and being the voice in the room that everyone listens to. He's already gaining command of the offense without having practiced a single rep with any of his new teammates in Carolina. This will make things much easier once the players are able to get into practices and start fully installing the offense. 

Of course, Bridgewater has some extremely large shoes to fill, but he's not letting that become a distraction. Instead, he's putting his head down, getting to work and gaining the trust of his teammates albeit virtually.

"I'm aware of the situation," Bridgewater told the media during a conference call in March. "It's a unique situation. For me, all I have to do is be myself. I knew when Drew [Brees] got injured, I had big shoes to fill then. I just constantly reminded myself to be me. By doing so, it allowed me to be a better teammate, a better football player and a better person."

Bridgewater also noted the success that he has had throughout his career and he's not here to rebuild - he's here to win games. "I'm a winner. Everywhere I've gone I've won, and I take pride in that. That's the reason I'm in games, to win. I'll just leave it at that. I'm just going to tell you right now, I'm a winner and plan on continuing to be one."

Do you see Teddy Bridgewater as a guy that can become a perennial leader for the Panthers? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!

You can follow us for future coverage by clicking "Follow" on the top righthand corner of the page. Also, be sure to like us on Facebook & Twitter:

Facebook - @PanthersOnSI

Twitter - @SI_Panthers and Schuyler Callihan at @Callihan_. 

Register today for free or log in to access this premium article.