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QB is recovered from back fractures

Updated: October 11, 2003, 1:11 PM ET
By Len Pasquarelli | ESPN.com

When the undefeated Minnesota Vikings resume play on Oct. 19, quarterback Daunte Culpepper will return to his starting job, head coach Mike Tice revealed.

Sidelined the last two games by a back injury, Culpepper worked pain-free at practices late this week and demonstrated no rustiness. So impressive was the fifth-year veteran that Tice acknowledged there was little reason to delay an announcement on his status.

"He was so good," Tice said, "I'm already announcing he'll start against ...

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