Bond Between Bridgewater and Brady Gives Panthers Offense a Head Start


The Carolina Panthers will enter the 2020 season as the only team in the NFL with an entirely new coaching staff.

Along with that, they'll have a new starting quarterback in Teddy Bridgewater.

Luckily, Bridgewater has a bit of a head start knowing the team's offense thanks to his familiarity and past relationship with new offensive coordinator, Joe Brady, who he spent time with, in New Orleans during the 2018 season.

"Just being familiar with the system, it's been huge," Bridgewater said in a Zoom press conference on Monday. "Especially with us not being able to meet in person for OTAs and throughout the spring...having that comfort and familiarity with this offense has been a huge head start for us." 

Brady comes to Carolina after a year with the LSU Tigers where he was the passing game coordinator and helped lead the Tigers to a National Championship title.

Meanwhile, Bridgewater is set to be a full-time starting quarterback for the first time since 2015.

The two will be relied upon to lead this Panthers offense.

"Teddy (Bridgewater) knows it (the offense) so well," head coach Matt Rhule said during a press conference in July. "Him and Joe (Brady) have such a good football relationship. If you get to know Teddy his demeanor is he's (just) all football."

The relationship goes even further off the field dating back to when Bridgewater received a second chance with the Saints when he was traded there by the New York Jets. 

"The thing with Joe (Brady) is that it's a special bond," Bridgewater said. "When I first got to New Orleans, Joe was the guy that took the time to teach me the offense. I got traded there right at the end of the preseason and I didn't really have the time to learn the system and Joe was the guy that went the extra mile for me."

In an offense that already has Christian McCaffrey, DJ Moore and Curtis Samuel, the addition of Bridgewater and wide receiver Robby Anderson has Bridgewater excited for what Brady has in store for the future.

"Joe (Brady) isn't just calling plays to get one guy the ball, but when you're in this offense, as you go through your progression there is going to be someone coming to your vision wherever you start at, there is always going to be an outlet, and I try to reiterate that to the guys so everyone is performing a play at high speed," Bridgewater said. "For those, they gotta understand that everyone is a viable option and it keeps you on your toes and keeps you locked in."

Replacing Cam Newton at quarterback will be no easy task even with Bridgewater's familiarity to the new offense, but he believes he's been given all the resources he needs to be a leader on the team. 

"It definitely does (feels like his team) and I credit that to coach (Matt) Rhule, Marty Hurney, David Tepper and the entire coaching staff," Bridgewater said. "They made this transition smooth and told me from the jump that this is your team and the guys will go as I go. Just being around the guys a couple days already I see them feeding off my energy and I feed off theirs."