As promised: Daunte Culpepper vs. the Saints

April, 15, 2009
4/15/09
3:30
PM ET
Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert

I know we have, oh, about 4 1/2 months to hash through this matchup. But I wanted to close the book on what first popped in my head upon seeing that Detroit will open the 2009 season at New Orleans.

There are no guarantees that Daunte Culpepper will be the Lions' starting quarterback in that game or any other in 2009, but all indications are Culpepper is the leading candidate. What you see below might be enough to advance his candidacy. Check out Culpepper's five career performances against the Saints:

Daunte Culpepper vs. New Orleans
Year Location Comp Att Pct Yds TD Int Rating Rush Yds TD Result
2000* Metrodome 17 31 54.8 302 3 0 120.7 4 51 0 W
2001 Superdome 23 34 67.6 332 2 1 106.5 0 0 0 L
2002 Superdome 26 36 72.2 312 2 0 116.9 7 73 2 W
2004 Superdome 26 37 70.3 425 5 2 125.6 7 13 0
W
2005 Metrodome 21 29 72.4 300 3 0 140 9 35 0
W
Totals 113 167 67.7 1,671 15 3 122.6 27 172 2 4-1
* Playoff game

Yes, I know a lot has changed since the last game in that chart, which came about a month before Culpepper suffered his career-altering right knee injury. And part of Culpepper's performance can be attributed to the matchup problems Minnesota presented the Saints defense.

But the numbers are what they are: Strong and consistent. One thing I can guarantee you: Come Sept. 13, the Lions won't have a quarterback on their roster with a better history than this one.

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