It's been said time and time again.
Teddy Bridgewater must have a flawless season in order to have a shot at the Heisman.
Louisville doesn't have the competitive schedule that other contenders are able to use as a launching pad to New York. The school also isn't on national television a lot. All of those factors play into voters not paying much attention to Bridgewater, who surely has a future as an NFL quarterback which then, of course, hurts his Heisman stock.
He had his chance Thursday night against Rutgers and bombed.
In the 24-10 win over the Scarlet Knights, Bridgewater threw for 310 yards and two touchdowns. He also threw an interception and fumbled the ball. Both turnovers came when the Cardinals were driving down field and looking to come away with points. To be fair, the statistics aren't that shabby. It should be considered a success anytime a player tops 300 yards and throws a pair of touchdowns.
However, he was playing against Rutgers!
Bridgewater for Heisman? Hmmm, Fresno and SMU each hung 52 on Rutgers. UL has 17 so far.— BCS Guru (@BCSGuru) October 11, 2013
This was a defense that allowed 558 yards against Southern Methodist and 537 yards against Fresno State. Shoot, mighty Eastern Michigan managed to pass for 335 yards on this defense. Louisville, an offense that was able to score at will through the first five games, struggled to provide 461 yards and 24 points.
Louisville’s offense failed to score for 36:48 of game time between mid-2Q and final TD w/ 2:32 left.— Chip Patterson (@Chip_Patterson) October 11, 2013
This is embarrassing.
Can Teddy Bridgewater still win the Heisman?
Coming into this game, the Rutgers defense couldn't stop a parked car from moving out of place. This is the unit that figured out Bridgewater and company? A team that dropped a combined 102 points in the last two weeks? Rutgers?
What made it worse is that the game was played on national television. It's one of the few nationally televised games Louisville has this season and was against one of the better opponents on the schedule. There were also oodles of NFL scouts showing up to check out what all the hype was about.
Bridgewater didn't disappoint the scouts. He made jaw-dropping throws at times, moved around the pocket well and shredded the opposing secondary when he was in a rhythm. However, he wasn't able to have that game that helped put him on top of the Heisman rankings.
Johnny Manziel, Marcus Mariota, Tajh Boyd or Jameis Winston would have destroyed this defense and produced statistics that forever live in the record books. Bridgewater provided a lackluster performance and did just what he needed to do for his team to win.
While it's good enough to keep the Cardinals in the hunt for another BCS bowl, it won't be good enough to be taken seriously with Heisman voters.