Vikings QB Bridgewater goes down in practice with injury

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (5) warms up before an NFL preseason football game against the San Diego Chargers Sunday, Aug. 28, 2016, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Andy Clayton-King)

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater went down with an injury in practice on Tuesday, causing the team to cut short its session after 25 minutes.

Bridgewater dropped back to pass during a drill, planted his foot and immediately went down. He grabbed his left knee while concerned teammates and athletic trainers huddled around him.

Coach Mike Zimmer eventually called off practice, and the rest of the team walked off the field while Bridgewater was being attended to. Moments later, a siren-blaring ambulance pulled into the team’s Winter Park headquarters, stayed for about 10 minutes and then pulled away.

The nature of Bridgewater’s injury was not immediately clear. The team said Zimmer would address the situation at a later time.

Players were visibly distraught as they exited the field, some hurling expletives into the air. A small group remained behind, huddled around him in prayer as team athletic trainers worked to immobilize his leg.

If Bridgewater is unable to return in a timely manner, there is little behind him on the depth chart. Shaun Hill is the primary backup, but he’s 36 years old and has played only sparingly over the last five years.

Bridgewater is entering his third season in the NFL and the Vikings were counting on him to take some major steps forward after a promising start to his career. He helped lead the Vikings to the NFC North championship last season as more of a game manager, but Zimmer and offensive coordinator Norv Turner have said that they expected him to be much more of a playmaker in 2016.

Bridgewater missed the second preseason game with a sore shoulder, but was very sharp on Sunday against San Diego. He went 12 for 16 for 161 yards and a touchdown in two quarters of work, leaving Vikings players and fans fully confident as the team starts to prepare for the season opener at Tennessee on Sept. 11.

The Vikings host the Los Angeles Rams in their final preseason game Thursday night, though Bridgewater and most of the starters were not expected to play.

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