Sunday, September 30, 2007
As a longtime Miami Dolphins fan, I generally root for my team every game. But today may have been the exception. All week long, Dolphin linebackers Joey Porter and Channing Crowder were talking trash. They did everything from guarantee victory against the Raiders to belittling Oakland and former Dolphins quarterback Daunte Culpepper. Meanwhile, Culpepper kept his mouth shut and concentrated on preparing for today's game. Can you say payback?
Jimmy Johnson used to say, "When you talk the talk, you better walk the walk." Well, this week the Dolphins did all the talking and Culpepper did all the walking--all the way to the end zone. The once maligned quarterback came back to South Florida, the same place that booted him out unceremoniously and opened a serious can of whup-ass on his former team. And nobody is happier for Culpepper than I am. Good for him.
Culpepper threw two touchdown passes and ran for three more in the Raiders 35-17 victory. On his second rushing touchdown, Culpepper raced around the corner and dove into the end zone. He then celebrated by pointing to his once wounded knee and screaming to Miami fans he was okay. Earlier this week Dolphins middle linebacker Channing Crowder said Culpepper was too slow and contributed little to the Dolphins. While what Crowder said was true, you don't give your opponent any more motivation than they need--especially when you haven't won a game yet.
Revenge is indeed sweet for Daunte Culpepper. Last year he was brought to Miami through a trade with Minnesota for a second round draft pick. Culpepper had been Pro Bowl player for the Vikings. But he was coming off a serious knee injury that ended his 2005 season and hadn't healed in 2006. But the Dolphins took a chance. He started 4 games for Miami, but Culpepper clearly wasn't ready to play. He was placed on injured reserve and never played for the Dolphins again.
When Cam Cameron replaced Nick Saban, he discarded Culpepper like yesterday's trash. Cameron made it clear he was never going to give Culpepper an opportunity to rehab or redeem himself. Culpepper wasn't even allowed to practice with the team. Instead Cameron went after former Chiefs QB Trent Green and basically gave Green the job without any competition. The last time Dolphin fans had seen Culpepper, he was escorted out by armed guards from the Dolphins training facility at Nova Southeastern University.
For anyone who has ever been shunned or dumped by an employer, this was a victory for you. They say kharma is a bitch. The Dolphins organization and Cam Cameron are now finding out that statement is emphatically true. Eat some crow Joey Porter and save a slice for your buddy Channing Crowder.