Culpepper wants Raiders to bring "A-game"

Quarterback Daunte Culpepper will make his fourth straight start for the Raiders on Sunday in Tennessee, the team confirmed Friday.

Daunte Culpepper, 1-2 in his previous three starts, has taken the majority of reps in practice this week while Josh McCown continues to work his way back from a broken toe injury. McCown took a few snaps with Oakland's starting offense this week but will head into the Tennessee game as Culpepper's back-up. JaMarcus Russell will be the emergency quarterback while Andrew Walter is likely to be de-activated.

Kiffin, who indicated he wanted to see how well McCown was doing before he made a decision on who the starting quarterback would be, said outside speculation about the quarterback situation hasn't fazed him.

Much of that speculation has centered on Russell, the heralded rookie who hasn't played a snap in the NFL. Kiffin, though, says too much might being made of it all.

"I know with our team it's not a big focus," Kiffin said. "They're not concerned about it. That's not where their focus is. I don't know where the outside focus is (but) we don't really concern ourselves with that.

"It just depends on who you feel is going to put you in the best position to win. You take all those variables into account. And Daunte gives us the best position to win Sunday."

Culpepper will have to play better than he has the past two weeks for the Raiders to have a chance at beating the Titans. He had his worst game of the season against San Diego then made progress against Kansas City only to throw a late interception in the fourth quarter when Oakland was driving for a potential game-winning field goal.

Many of the problems against the Chargers and Chiefs came as a result of the Raiders' running game being shut down -- 108 yards combined against both -- but Culpepper has played a role in the offensive struggles, also.

His biggest downfall has been in holding onto the ball too long and trying to make a big play rather than throwing the ball away. That's led to multiple sacks, frequent fumbles and an offense struggling to get into the end zone.

"In my opinion, I think what we've got to do offensively isn't a matter of running or throwing," Culpepper said. "We've just got to be on our game. We can't have 10 guys doing the right thing and one guy doing the wrong thing. That's where we're at. [Tennessee's defense] is very good against the run. We've been good running the ball. We've got to continue to be good, and I know they're trying to continue to be good.

"If it comes down to us throwing the ball, we've just got to be able to make the plays. I feel confident in our passing game, but I also feel very, very confident in our running game. Like I said, we've got to bring our ‘A-game' against these guys. They are very solid all the way around."

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