Today is the day that Dolphins quarterback Daunte Culpepper has been waiting for. Today he goes in front of arbitrator John Feerick and states his case on why he feels the Miami Dolphins should release him. Culpepper, who is his own agent, will be represented as well by NFL Players Association general counsel Richard Berthelsen. As of right now it is not known who will represent the Dolphins in the case. Culpepper would like the Dolphins to release him, so he is free to find work with another team. The Dolphins have been trying to trade Culpepper, but have found no takers.
Culpepper was told by Miami after the trade to get Trent Green that he no longer fits in their plans. The QB had declared before being told about the Fins plans that he was excited and was looking forward to going at it in camp with Green to find out who the QB of the Dolphins would be. Culpepper attended a mini-camp after his knee was declared good to go by a doctor, but walked off the field when he was not getting any reps in team drills.
Culpepper also stated to the Dolphins that he would not restructure his contract with any team that wanted to trade for him. It was believed that the Jags were the main team interested in Daunte, but since then they have backed off. Most likely they will wait to see the outcome of the hearing if Culpepper will get his way, and if he does, then maybe they will take another look at bringing him in to backup Bryon Leftwich.
The 30-year-old came to the Dolphins just last offseason after 7 years with the Vikings. He was expected to lead a Dolphins team the was looking to challenge for the AFC East title last season. After doing all the drills and practice reps in camps and training camp, Culpepper came out flat, and from the opener vs the Steelers one could tell he was not 100 percent. He was shown the bench after just four games, and didn’t play the remainder of the season as his knee simply never allowed him to get back on the field.
Look for Daunte to put on a strong case today to try and get his release. Overall, it’s going to be a tough sell though, as unlike the Steve McNair case last year with the Titans where he was not allowed to use the teams facility, Culpepper has not been barred from anywhere. This one could turn interesting if the ruling comes down that the Fins did nothing wrong. If so, Culpepper could be a lame duck QB sitting on the pine in Miami this season.