The recent trade between the Raiders and Bengals has been the talk of the town for two days now with football analysts and fans around the league questioning from "Did the Raiders give up too much?" to "Who got the better deal?" It seems the majority thinks the former. A lot of personalities out there feel the Raiders gave up a "kings ransom" for a QB many feel is past his prime and can't play at a Pro Bowl level anymore. I think coach Jackson summed it up best at the Raiders press conference yesterday: "This isn't about the numbers. This is about the person," Jackson said. "I know his heart, I know his passion, I know his dedication to the game. ... I'm not concerned about Carson's past....I know, with me and him and the rest of this staff and football team, where we're going to go." That sums up exactly how I feel about this deal.
What gets lost in the mix of all of these opinions regarding 1st round draft picks is the fact that they are picks of unproven players who no one knows what they will become in the NFL. We know who Carson Palmer is because we've seen him play on a pro level. For all the hype surrounding Andrew Luck, we don't "know" what he will be in the NFL. Remember this; the same critics who are dogging the Raiders for giving up 2 potential 1st round picks (key word "potential") are the same people who thought Cam Newton would be a bust as a QB on the pro level. They're the same critics who thought Ryan Leaf and Brian Bosworth were worthy of being 1st round selections. Another thing to keep in mind is the fact that the Raiders don't need to draft any players at the skill positions for at least the next 3 and maybe 4 years. The team is stacked with world class athletes on both sides of the ball who could represent the USA in the Olympics. This by far will be the best team Palmer's ever had at any time in his career. He gets the keys to a Porsche of an offense with some of the best athletes in the league. In Palmer the Raiders have another QB who has the physical tools and mental capacity to take the offense to the next level. I like Jackson's philosophy and the renegade mentality of the late Al Davis. The game of football in many ways is like the game of life. In life it really doesn't matter what other people think when it comes to decisions you make. Opinions are not facts. They will never be able to control the outcome of any circumstance. Kudos to the Raiders for making one of the gutsiest moves of the season.