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49ers edge Raiders; Culpepper looks good

August 19, 2007|From the Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO -- If Daunte Culpepper can just hold on to the ball, he might be ready to become the Oakland Raiders' starting quarterback.

Alex Smith and the San Francisco 49ers' offensive starters also looked well-prepared before their backups won the annual Battle of the Bay.

Culpepper passed for 75 yards and threw touchdown passes to John Madsen and Zack Crockett, but 49ers rookie Thomas Clayton scored on a one-yard plunge with 47 seconds left in San Francisco's 26-21 exhibition victory Saturday night.

Culpepper, the former Minnesota star who signed with the Raiders on July 31, made the biggest impression on a Candlestick Park crowd harmoniously split between fans of the Bay Area's NFL clubs.

After a lost season in Miami, Culpepper is hoping to regain his Pro Bowl form with Oakland (1-1). He went six for eight, didn't throw an interception and even ran 13 yards for a first down.

Except for two fumbled snaps, he looked sharp against the 49ers (1-1) in a performance that should put him in the lead in his three-man derby with Andrew Walter and Josh McCown.

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