Assuming that Coach Kiffin's assessment of Daunte's fumble-itus is correct, he recently stated that it is a result of not working with the Jeremy Newberry enough, tonight can be Daunte's, Oakland Raider Silver and Black, coming out party.
Tonight he will have every offensive bullet at his disposal. Jerry Porter, Zach Miller, Mike Williams, Ronald Curry, Justin Griffith and LaMont Jordan are looking like very solid and even exceptional options, not to mention the suddenly dependable 1st team offensive line (No sacks allowed).
The key, to me, has been the fact that Daunte looks as healthy as he's been in two years. Against the Niners he was able to roll out and throw as well as any QB in the League. The same can be said for his first game against the Cards. If not for a couple of drops from that infamous third string of receivers he would be winning the QB battle by even more than he is now.
One has to believe that with every day that he takes 1st team snaps he is getting better. Each and every day that he works with the same center (Although Grove and Newberry will still be splitting 1st team snaps this week) his rhythm will continue to get better.
Think about it Raider Nation...Jerry Porter, our best receiver, is on board after missing all of last year...The O-Line is looking like the strength that Kiffin proclaimed it to be when he took the reigns...Daunte "Freaking" Culpepper looks healthy...Jordan looks healthy...Our Tight Ends can catch the damn ball...AND OUR DEFENSE HAS GOTTEN BETTER!!!
We all sat around thinking that as long as we fixed the O-Line and the defense stayed the same the Raiders would be better off than last year. That is even with a "Shell" shocked Walter, an unproven McCown and a rookie QB. Now we have Culpepper!!!
The same QB that when healthy is a top 5 QB in the League.
Yes, that is right!!! I said it.
Given that they are all healthy, and not in jail, the only QB's I'd rather have are P. Manning, Brady, Vick, Palmer...And...And...And...That's it.
I mean, a case can be made for Bulger, Brees and Favre, but a healthy Daunte is just better than them.
To some this may seem like severe Raider Homerism, but think about it.
In four games last season he was sacked 21 times, sound familiar. It was blamed on his loss of mobility while recovering from knee surgery. If any of you have seen him so far in the preseason you will know that he looks pretty well recovered.
In his last healthy season, although his main target, Randy Moss, played in only parts of 13 games and tallied only 767 yards Daunte Culpepper passed for 4,717 yards, 39 TD's and 11 INT's.
Furthermore, Lane Kiffin has said that he has instructed Daunte to pull the ball down and run more when things break down. Lane wants to minimize turnovers and plays that lose yardage. Make no mistake about it. Lane wants the defense to win games. It looks to me like he has diagnosed our weaknesses from last year and is dealing with them.
With this approach and a healthy Culpepper, we CAN win the West. Let's Go RRRRRAAAAIIIDDDEERRSSS!!!!