August 10, 2011
But he very much still considers himself an NFL quarterback, and believes there's a place for him in the NFL. Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network got in touch with Culpepper to see how things were going for him.
Culpepper, who at 34 is a relative youngster compared to some backups, tells me he is "as strong as ever," squatting 500 pounds, running hills and "still throwing the ball 70-plus yards." He says he remains at his playing weight from Minnesota, 265 pounds.
"I am optimistic that somebody will eventually need a game-ready backup like me on their team. Hopefully, I won't have to wait for somebody to get hurt before I am given the opportunity to sign with a team."
It's not like Culpepper's just been sitting around, either. He was with the UFL's Sacramento Mountain Lions in 2010, throwing for 1,944 yards and 10 touchdowns in eight games. Twelve interceptions, too (sorry, Daunte).
I'd love to see the man get back into the league, and he's right when he says that there will be quarterbacks employed in the NFL this year worse than him. But they'll all be younger, too, and with some upside.
The last time anyone saw Daunte in the NFL, he was in Detroit getting benched for Drew Stanton(notes) and no one seemed to think that was a bad idea. No one saw Daunte playing in Detroit and thought, "I sure wish he was on my team." If that's the last image of him in the minds of NFL general managers, then that's probably not good for his NFL chances.
I think he probably is going to have to wait for some other quarterback to get hurt. In fact, he's probably going to have to wait for a whole lot of other quarterbacks to get hurt.
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