Detroit Lions

Daunte Culpepper Leaving Is Addition By Subtraction For Detroit Lions

GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 18: Charles Woodson #21 of the Green Bay Packers hits Daunte Culpepper #11 of Detroit Lions at Lambeau Field on October 18, 2009 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Packers defeated the Lions 26-0. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Michael SchotteyNFL National Lead WriterJune 7, 2010

The debate is over, Randy Moss made Daunte Culpepper what he once was, not vice versa.

That wasn't always an established fact.

For years, as Culpepper looked average on bad teams and Moss fell asleep on the Raiders, people contended that Culpepper was better than his numbers while Moss was a bust.

This writer, optimistically hoped that such was the case many a time as news reports leaked that the signal caller had lost weight before the 2009 NFL Season. Then Culpepper fell flat on his slightly skinnier face.

When Shaun Hill was signed by the Detroit Lions, it marked the end of an era. Now that Culpepper will be a Mountain Lion, that era is officially in the rear view mirror.

The Daunte Culpepper era was an era of settling for mediocrity. The idea that a quarterback in the NFL could be "good enough," is an idea that the Lions once fostered out of necessity (McMahon, Kitna, Culpepper, Orlovsky).

Now, Stafford mans the helm as a number one overall draft pick, not assured of success, but at least a significant investment in the position.

Shaun Hill backs him up as an above average NFL quarterback who was replaced by the younger Alex Smith although many believed Hill was the better option.


Well, maybe the era isn't entirely over.

Still, addition by subtraction is almost never a true statement. Star players who leave a locker room, even the most abrasive, leave a locker room less talented. Starters who are cut with cap concerns may make room for draft picks, but leave valuable roles left unfilled.

With Culpepper, this time "addition by subtraction" is true.

Daunte Culpepper had the mindset that he was owed—something, anything—by the Lions. Whether it was a promise by the former coaching staff or a overestimation of his own abilities, he was of the opinion that his playing time should be there.

Only his talent never was.

Neither was his leadership. 

In the Lions current position, Daunte Culpepper is the last person you want as a quarterback on the roster—someone who doesn't want to mentor Matt Stafford and who doesn't have any business doing it anyway.

Shaun Hill can come in and win games if Stafford goes down and teach him a lot from the sidelines.

Culpepper would not have been quiet as the third quarterback and his declining skills would have further atrophied with a lack of snaps. Furthermore, he would not have been worth any type of salary as an inactive third quarterback on most Sundays.

While Culpepper may be a better than many teams' third quarterback, he is in the UFL because everyteam—even the lowly Lions—is better without him on the roster.


Michael Schottey operates Blue And Silver Pride and is a Detroit Lions featured columnist for Bleacher Report . He also serves as a team correspondent for and is a guest blogger for Mlive's Highlight Reel . Check out his Podcasts and add him on Twitter .

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