In 1989, the Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings engaged in a massive trade that involved 18 players and draft picks. However, the best known part involved the Cowboys sending then-superstar running back Herschel Walker, along with draft picks, to Minnesota for a bunch of players along with three first round picks, three second round picks, a third and a sixth.
The Vikings made the trade and essentially wrote off their future in the belief that Walker was the piece they needed to get to the Super Bowl. While he wasn't horrible in his time in purple, he never managed to reach the heights he did in Dallas and eventually left for the Eagles a few years later. The Vikings remain without a title in the post-merger era.
The Cowboys, on the other hand, used the picks they hauled in from the trade to build the nucleus of their great early 90s teams. They moved up in the 1990 draft to take Emmitt Smith and drafted Pro Bowl safety Darren Woodson and starting strongside LB Dixon Edwards among others. It's not hard to see who got the better of the deal.
The lesson you'd think every team learnt from that trade was that you don't throw away your future for the perceived present. Only it seems Hue Jackson didn't pay attention when he traded the Bengals a 2012 No.1 and 2013 No.2 for Carson Palmer, a 32 year old quarterback who last played a lousy season in 2010, an injury history and a well-documented reputation of not being the leader a team needs at the position.
The leadership thing was, in my opinion, the biggest issue with Palmer. In his prime, he was as talented physically as any quarterback in the league. He could make almost any throw there was and some. Yet his teams never won. Reason being that they never got behind him. Sadly, nothing seems to have changed. I remember one shot from the last game when he was trying to talk to DHB and Murphy - two guys who are hardly divas or malcontents - and it was clear by the looks on their faces that they weren't buying what he was selling. Probably cause he was the reason they were in a bad position.
That of course is the other knock on Palmer that has existed his whole career - his knack of throwing interceptions, particularly in bad moments. It's only gotten worse as his arm strength has declined but the mind hasn't. He broke Andrew Walter's Raider record for INTs in a single season last game despite playing just six and a half games in a Raider jersey. We all criticised Jason Campbell for not being able to execute the deep throws like we wished, but there's one thing we knew with JC - as long as Vince Wilfork wasn't on the field, he wouldn't make a silly turnover. I felt confident every time he had the ball that the Raiders would get it back the next play and that he would make the throws he needed to.
So we've established that Palmer hasn't been the saviour he was touted to be. And make no mistake - he had to be the saviour. Any Raider fan on the street could have told Hue that no, we were more than a quarterback away from the Super Bowl. Even with Boller under center, we were a QB, a competent defensive co-ordinator and a few playmakers on D - particularly in the back seven - away from a fourth Lombardi. And that's not even factoring in getting smacked with the injury bug.
Now next year we have a chance for a healthy team and a new DC, but we won't be able to add those defensive playmakers we need because we have no draft picks or cap room to do so, unless our new GM cleans house. Had we kept our No.1 we would at least have been in the running for a top DB or DT - right now we're screwed because of the short-sightedness of Hue Jackson.
I have more to say, but honestly I'll just keep repeating myself.
tl;dr - I'm mad about the Carson trade and I think Hue has screwed the team with it.