Fumble play sums up Teddy Bridgewater’s 2020 season

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Teddy Bridgewater
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Teddy Bridgewater /
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Teddy Bridgewater
(Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule /

Matt Rhule’s criticism of Teddy Bridgewater

It didn’t take long for Matt Rhule to point the finger of blame in Teddy Bridgewater’s direction for the second straight week. The head coach was critical of the way his quarterback handled such a  pivotal goal-line play and it has only increased the friction obviously building between both parties.

That is to be expected. Rhule placed a lot of faith in Bridgewater to bring him to the Carolina Panthers – sacrificing Cam Newton in the process – but the cracks are now beginning to show after a season of disappointments that began encouragingly.

Rhule blasted Bridgewater at half-time on NFL Network and did the same in his post-game presser.

"“I hate to beat him up on just that one play. There were a lot of things that were not up to our standard across the board. But that play just can’t happen.”"

It was a near play.

This is typical of what we have seen from Bridgewater in 2020.

Things are reaching boiling point, of that there is little doubt.

The Panthers could well be in a position to take a top quarterback prospect not named Trevor Lawrence in the 2021 NFL Draft. Although they have some pressing needs elsewhere, if the decision-makers opted to go in this particular direction it would be a damning indictment of how people behind the scenes have viewed Bridgewater’s contribution.

There is still time for Bridgewater to turn things around. He has two games left of the 2020 campaign and given his contract situation, it makes no sense at all to part ways with the former Louisville standout this spring.

Whether he can take advantage of this is another matter entirely.