Culpepper Contract Talks

Just when fans say they don't care if Daunte Culpepper goes, Red McCombs says he wants him to stay.

Fans can be fickle. They tend to forget that a franchise QB doesn't come around that often and also forget that, during Dennis Green's tenure with the Vikings, the team went through starting quarterbacks at a clip of better than one per season.

With no stability at the position, Green drafted Daunte Culpepper to be the guy that led the team into the future. Red McCombs agrees with that idea.

McCombs, who was an active part of the war room back in 1999, confirmed yesterday that the Vikings will look to sign a long-term contract extension with Culpepper in the offseason. Daunte is signed through the 2003 season.

Despite his recent troubles, Culpepper remains one of the most athletic quarterbacks in the game and would garner a mid- to high first-round draft pick in trade. However, McCombs has no intention of getting rid of Culpepper, so, if you don't like him now, maybe you will in 2005 or 2006 because odds are he'll still be here.

THURSDAY NOTES
* As many as eight starters are listed on this week's injury report, although all are expected to play. In reasons known only to Mike Tice, WR Cedric James, who ankle injury is going to sideline him 2-4 weeks, is listed as doubtful instead of out. Two players -- OT Lewis Kelly (ankle) and DE Kenny Mixon (neck) -- are listed as questionable. Six others are listed as probable -- WR D'Wayne Bates (back), TE Byron Chamberlain, LB Henri Crockett (hip), G David Dixon (toe), DT Chris Hovan (back), G Corbin Lacina (back).
* The Packers had been targeting this game to get Vonnie Holliday back, but he is listed as out on the Packers' injury report, which includes only two other players -- DT Cletidus Hunt (knee, questionable) and RB Najeh Davenport (knee, probable).
* The pretrial phase of Randy Moss' driving/marijuana possession case has been continued to Dec. 12.

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