Herald Journal Columns
Nov. 21, 2005, Herald Journal

Daunte who?

By KRISTEN MILLER

Daunte Culpepper’s knee injury just might be a blessing in disguise for the Vikings.

Ever since Culpepper’s injury, quarterback Brad Johnson has been pulling through for the team, even though Sunday’s win against the Giants was largely due to the effort of the defense and special teams.

Johnson’s main contribution to the win was by not turning the ball over, which is Culpepper’s trademark.

Culpepper’s injury may have saved the season, despite head coach Mike Tice’s assertion that his injured quarterback is the queen bee.

Having an experienced quarterback like Johnson in the games makes all the difference when it comes to quick decision making and leadership.

With a more experienced quarterback, and more emphasis put on defense and special teams, Vikings just might be a better team.

I wasn’t sweating during Sunday’s game when there was just over a minute to play and the game was tied.

Our team (Vikings) had it. They had it!

Their energy was there and their minds were in the game, and they were ready and willing to win that game.

Besides, the game was tied, so we would have won it any ways in overtime.

With four interceptions, and one that was returned for a 92-yards for a touchdown by safety Darren Sharper, the defense proved it could win the game for the Vikings.

Percentages show that with three or more interceptions in a game, a team is most likely going to win the game, which the Vikings affirmed Sunday.

In Culpepper’s six games this year, he fumbled the ball five times, and threw 12 interceptions.

While Johnson, in his first two games, has only turned the ball over twice, and both games were victories for the purple.

Although Giant’s quarterback Eli Manning had many more passing yards than Johnson, he also turned the ball over four times to Johnson’s zero turnovers.

The rumor going around some Twin Cities radio talk shows is that Culpepper would refuse extra film sessions, as if he had learned everything there was to know about football.

On the other side of the spectrum, Johnson spends hours reviewing and studying game tapes.

This further points out that Culpepper’s main focus is not on the game, but on fortune and fame.

One of the reasons Culpepper was drafted in the first place was because he was a running quarterback.

Well, it has also been known that a running quarterback has never won a Super Bowl (especially now with his knee injury).

What I find a bit humorous is that Culpepper got drafted by former head coach Dennis Green, over defensive end Jevon Kearse who has played in two Super Bowls already. This was a bad choice by Green, since it’s a known fact that defense wins championships.

Also, Culpepper’s been taking up a large portion of the salary cap, money that should be going for good defense.

Well, Culpepper might not be getting all that money much longer.


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