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Culpepper expected to be ready for minicamps

DAVIE, Fla. (March 23, 2007) -- Daunte Culpepper was at the Miami Dolphins training facility around sunrise, ready for another day of rehabilitating his surgically rebuilt knee.

When quarterback schools and minicamps start next month, the Dolphins expect Culpepper will be there, too.

And with that, the revelations end.

Culpepper's status is one of many mysteries surrounding the Dolphins. Already this offseason, Miami has switched coaches from Nick Saban to Cam Cameron, seen several offensive starters from last season move elsewhere and added linebacker Joey Porter to a talented defensive corps.

The big question, as always, is at quarterback, especially with other NFL starters such as Trent Green and David Carr believed to be under consideration.

"Everyone knows our critical issue is our quarterback's level of play, no matter who that quarterback is," Cameron said. "I respect those questions."

He may respect them, but he's also not inclined to answer them too specifically.

"I've never believed it serves any purpose talking to our quarterbacks through the media," Cameron said.

Joey Harrington, who started much of last season in Miami, was cut earlier this offseason partly because he was due a $1 million roster bonus. The Dolphins have Culpepper and Cleo Lemon, whom Cameron worked with previously in San Diego. Miami's also negotiating with Kansas City to trade for Green, who also has some history with Cameron going back to their time together in Washington.

Miami, which has had a revolving door at quarterback since Dan Marino retired, might also be considering Carr, released by the Houston Texans.

Cameron, though, remained mum on all possibilities.

"Instead of talking about it all the time, I think I'll just share with you our philosophy as it relates to that position. That'll be a position where the job will be earned," Cameron said. "And the great quarterbacks don't want it any other way. ... I've never been around a quarterback who was given a job."

Culpepper was acquired a year ago from the Minnesota Vikings for a second-round draft pick, just four months removed from reconstructive knee surgery. He started last season's first four games, completing 60 percent of his passes and throwing for 929 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions.

But his mobility was hampered because of ongoing knee troubles, and he was sacked 21 times. So the Dolphins started Harrington in the fifth game and kept him in the lineup until the season finale, when Lemon started at Indianapolis.

"He's still in kind of a rehabilitation mode," Cameron said of Culpepper, who didn't speak with reporters Friday. "But he's making progress. He's there. He's doing everything he can do."

Notes: The Dolphins still have K Olindo Mare on the roster, even though they've obtained former Giants K Jay Feely. Cameron said he liked Mare but acknowledged "it's probably not ideal for him." ... Unlike Saban, Cameron hasn't gotten to know RB Ricky Williams yet. Williams was suspended for the 2006 season and played in the Canadian Football League. "Philosophy. Focus on what you can control," Cameron said when asked his reasoning for not reaching out to Williams. ... Cameron will not be at the league meetings in Arizona next week. He's going on a previously scheduled vacation with his wife.

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