We've all heard, ad nauseum, how Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers is the undisputed master of the hard count and how he's able to use it to his advantage. Well, it turns out that another quarterback in the NFC North is pretty good at that sort of thing, too.
According to this picture from Imgur, Minnesota Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater managed to draw opposing defenses offside on 17 different occasions last season. . .the same number of times as Rodgers did.
It didn't seem like it was quite that many, to be honest. I know we saw Bridgewater pull this off a few times in 2015, but I had no idea it was that frequent.
To the best of my recollection. . .and I haven't gone through every play of the Vikings' 2015 season to see exactly when Bridgewater did this. . .there seems to be one primary difference between when Bridgewater does this and when Rodgers does it. Whenever Rodgers does it, it seems like his receivers are going downfield and that he's going to be throwing the ball. On the other hand, when Bridgewater gets an opposing defense to jump offsides, he takes the snap and then turns and hands it to a running back. . .generally unsuccessfully because, well, the defense got a head start on things.
Hopefully, as the Minnesota offense becomes more balanced and Bridgewater gets more experience, he can use the hard count that he's developed to take advantage of defensive offsides and take some shots deeper down the field. For now, however, it's a pretty encouraging sign that a quarterback entering his second full season as a starting quarterback appears to have already matched the "master" of one aspect of his craft.