Chad Ochocinco #85 of the New England Patriots
The Patriots have released Chad Ochocinco which will lead many to wonder if the former two time All Pro receiver should rejoin Carson Palmer in Oakland. And the answer is no. Or as they say en espanol; no.
I don't see Carson Palmer having any interest in having a reunion with his former teammate. Palmer was teammates with Ochocinco aka Chad Johnson for seven seasons in Cincinnati. In fact, the first time we saw the name Ochocinco on the back of number 85's jersey, it was Palmer who was tasked with ripping it off to reveal Johnson underneath it. Little did he know at the time, the ridiculous name was going to become permanent not long after.
Those seven seasons together were plenty for Palmer. He has a new stable of young receivers with whom to connect-- something of which he has worked hard to accomplish since joining the team midway through last season.
Ochocinco could never find his footing with the Patriots. In his one season there, he caught a total of 15 passes for 276 yards. The eleven year veteran is due for a fresh start somewhere but it really can't be the Raiders.
The Raiders already tried bringing in a former Palmer receiver when they signed TJ Houshmandzadeh last season. They cut a solid receiver in Derek Hagan to sign Houshmandzadeh and that decision proved to be the wrong one. Hagan had 13 catches in four games with the Bills while Houshmandzadeh could only muster 11 catches over eight games with the Raiders.
Palmer realizes that his new beginning with the Raiders is a complete new beginning. No more of the headaches and nonsense that came with being a member of one of the most dysfunctional franchises in the NFL (that's the Bengals, not the Raiders) along with players like Ochocinco.
What could Ochocinco bring to the Raiders?
He's a veteran who, outside of last season, has put up big numbers in his career. But last season was not a fluke. His skills are in serious decline. Most likely he will never be close to the same receiver he once was. And the Raiders run the West Coast offense which is not the style of offense in which Ochocinco has played well.
The Raiders also have a deep receiving corps. A lot of talk has been around who the Raiders would have to sacrifice among their stable of receivers, not about who could come in and solidify it.
The top three are set from last season with Denarius Moore, Darrius Heyward-Bey, Jacoby Ford. After that, there is Louis Murphy and Eddie McGee who are vying for playing time. The Raiders came into the offseason in need of a big body receiver with dependable hands and from all indications, they have found that guy in rookie fifth round pick Juron Criner. That is six receivers right there before we have said a word about standout undrafted free agent Rod Streater or free agent signee, Duke Calhoun.
There is no room on this team for Chad Ochocinco, both in the locker room and on the field.