The drive to start as an NFL quarterback must be an incredibly powerful one, one that will allow the owner of said drive to place himself in a particularly toxic situation just for the sake of being the guy behind center when the season gets underway, no matter what the risk to personal health and well-being.
I can’t explain Daunte Culpepper’s signing with the Raiders in any other fashion other than to consider the possibility that he is a complete masochist. A masochist whose team will handily take its two annual whoopings from my Broncos, but a masochist nonetheless, going from a semi-shitty offensive line in Miami to an unreasonable facsimile of one in Oakland — and make no mistake, he will be the starter in week one, even if JaMarcus Russell ends his holdout in the next few days. This will either work long enough to give Russell a year or seasoning or fail so spectacularly where Russell will have to take over at about the same time Vince Young did last year for the Titans.
Culpepper is Aaron Brooks with a much better arm. That still makes him ten times better than either Josh McCown or Andrew Walter, but for the Raiders’ opponents, it’s still ten times worse than what the top teams in the AFC West are looking at.