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Sources have confirmed the Oakland Raiders and Cincinnati Bengals have agreed in principle to a trade deadline deal for the services of former #1 overall pick Carson Palmer. Palmer is currently in the Bay Area undergoing a physical and the native Californian got exactly what he wanted, and that was to play for an organization that he felt would surround him with the talent needed to win football games in post-season. The terms of the agreement, as reported by sources, has a 2012 first round pick and a second round selection in 2013 that could become a first round pick if Carson Palmer helps the Raiders win a post-season game this season.
This is a super agressive move for Coach Hugh Jackson and the Raiders. Palmer hasn't played in over a year and is coming off injury issues to both his knee and elbow that he sustained during his time with the Bengals. Palmer is a former Pro Bowl Quarterback, who now at 31 years old, is coming off a season in which he threw for almost 4000 yards. Judging by the early season success for the Raiders, the pick in the 2012 draft could come later in the first round. Palmer taken 1st overall in the 2003 draft has thrown for over 3800 yards four times in his career including connecting for 4,131 in 2007. Palmer has also put the ball in the endzone, throwing for over 20 touchdowns five times, including 32 touchdowns in 2005. A career quarterback rating of 87 with 22,000 NFL passing yards and 154 touchdowns on a team that didn't always do the best job protecting him in the pocket and hasn't always had a bunch of weapons for him on the outside. What can a guy with #1 overall talent do on a better team with a better offensive line and a deeper list of receivers than what he ever had in Cincy? That is the million dollar question that will determine whether the Raiders gave up too much to acquire him. No one will argue Quarterback is the most important position in today's NFL and Hugh Jackson who had plenty of time to evaluate Palmer in his time as receivers coach with the Bengals should know exactly how Palmer will fit into his offense in Silver and Black.
For the Bengals and owner Mike Brown, this allows the team to move on from something that had to of been a thorn in thier collective sides every since Palmer threatened to retire rather than suit up for the Bengals any longer. Cincy was never able to put together the type of O-line it needed to have much of a verticle passing game and instead has turned to an offensive philosophy that was based on a short, timed passing game that would get the ball out of the quarterbacks hand quickly and compliment that with running Cedric Benson between the tackles. The club has moved on with Andy Dalton behind center and the 2 picks that could become to first rounders allows the team to begin to look to the future. It was Palmer who refused to continue his career in Cincy and this allows owner Mike Brown to save face and end this stand off with Palmer. The Bengals should be able to get some much needed help on the offensive line and for their defense in the next two drafts and the picks coming over from the Raiders will be a big part of that.
The Raiders on the other hand feel like they now have the type of team that can win the West and return to the post-season that has eluded them since Gannon to Rice and Brown of the 2002 season. It's been a long time since the Silver and Black have made noise among the NFL's elite and their evaluation of Palmer concluded that this was the move that best put them in position to be there once again. If the team is right and the team finishes strong this season than the selection in the 2012 draft will come later in the first round. What type of player are they missing out on at 25? Were they planning on renewing the contract of Jason Campbell and possibly looking at cornerback with that pick? It doesn't look like we will ever know now. The logical move is to allow Campbell to take his shot at free agency and to move forward with Palmer. The team will receive compensatory picks for this past off-season losses of Nnamdi Asomugha and Robert Gallery that could net a 3rd and 4th round selection. Also, the club is up against the cap, and may be able to do somethings in free agency that they may not of had the room to do had they still had the first round pick to sign next season. Palmer is said to be currently restructuring his contract and that and his physical were the only two topics for discussion in allowing the deal to go through before the 4pm EST deadline today.
Opinions are all over the place on this deal. There are many that think that the Bengals got the better of this and that was alot to give up for a guy that has been out of the game for awhile. Others say that Palmer is a proven comodity at the most important position that has had a good deal of success over his career for a team that didn't necesarily always surround him with super bowl winning talent. Rumor has it that this is not the first time the two teams have discussed a possible deal and that Al Davis, prior to his passing, frequently admired the abilities of the former USC gunslinger. For all those fans that wish their team would just pull the trigger already and bring in a guy that could make a big impact for their franchise; you have to look at the Silver and Black and think they did what they had to do to get the deal done. Palmer has been working out for months and is healthy and at 31 still has plenty of years left for the Raiders to feel like they came away with the one piece they needed to take that next step.
Getting him ready is now the focus, provided the team and Palmer leap the final contract and physical hurdles. The Raiders have the Chiefs coming up on Sunday and will then go into their bye week followed by a contest against Denver at home. It appears to be the ideal timing to get Palmer ready for two very important showdowns with division rival San Diego. Here on Silver and Black Pride yesterday we looked at trade scenarios to acquire Palmer and today a trade that many said was impossible because of the stance of Bengals owner Mike Brown has come to fruition. Continue to tune in to SB Nation and here to GMtalk as we continue to address all that is the new front office of the Oakland Raiders.