As the New York Post put it, Teddy Bridgewater's debut with the New York Jets on Friday night "couldn't have gone better."
Bridgewater completed 7-of-8 passes for 85 yards and a touchdown as he came off the bench after veteran Josh McCown started the game for the Jets. Bridgewater had thrown just two passes the previous two seasons after suffering a career-threatening knee injury with the Vikings on Aug. 30, 2016.
"I felt great. It was an awesome feeling. I was at peace out there," Bridgewater said, via the Jets. "I was just so excited. I was glad to be out there with the guys, looking at [their] eyes, and feeding off [their] energy."
The 25-year-old finished his opening drive by connecting with running back Isaiah Crowell on a crossing route for a 16-yard touchdown, Bridgewater's first touchdown pass since Aug. 28 2016.
In his second series, Bridgewater finally took a hit – and it was a huge moment for him.
"I was actually anxious to get hit, if anything, because I wanted to get hit," Bridgewater said. "It felt good getting hit again. For me, it was like the final step of the process. I got hit and got right back up, and it served as a reminder that the game’s still the same."
Despite his excellent debut, Bridgewater's future with the Jets is in question thanks to a report from the New York Daily News that he's on the trading block. There's a legit chance he could win the starting job, but rookie first-round pick Sam Darnold is the future in New York.
Remember, Bridgewater was considered Minnesota's franchise quarterback prior to suffering his knee injury. There's still a chance, at just 25 years old, that another team will view him similarly.