After some success with the Cincinnati Bengals, tough times fell on quarterback Carson Palmer.
Understandably, Palmer grew tired of dysfunction that came from losing. Locker room distractions such as Terrell Owens and Chad Johnson destroyed the team’s chemistry. Production wise, Palmer also showed a decline mostly because of injury. Retirement seemed like a good option, and he literally sat home until the Oakland Raiders came calling. Surrendering two first-round picks was too much, but they were in dire straits after losing Jason Campbell.
Palmet’s 2011 stats of 13 touchdowns and 16 interceptions showed the rust of someone who took time off. The next season saw solid improvement with 22 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. Sadly, it wasn’t enough for his team. Two late-round picks went to Oakland as Palmer was traded to the Arizona Cardinals.
This past season, he finished with 24 touchdowns and 22 interceptions, providing an upgrade over Ryan Lindley as well as whatever else they trotted out there. His resurrection was not quite Kurt Warner’s, but he showed that he still has ability to start.
Palmer is entering the wrong side of 30, when players at his position tend to reach the final phase of their careers. Entering 2014, however, Arizona should only worry about their backups. The Cardinals can challenge for NFC West supremacy next season. superstar wide out Larry Fitzgerald remains reliable, and Palmer is more than capable of leading this team for at least another year.