AFC West’s Hired Guns: Carson Palmer – Raiders

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Carson Palmer - Source: cincyjungle.com

Oakland Raiders Hired Gun: Carson Palmer
10th Season (USC)

It seems Carson Palmer has now taken his leadership role seriously. With Campbell out of the picture and Terrell Pryor nowhere near NFL ready, Palmer is looking and feeling rejuvenated enough to make an impact in 2012. Palmer has spent lots of time in the off-season with his receivers trying to develop his timing before camp begins. After a knee injury in 2006 and recent trouble with his trade demands being ignored by Cincinnati, his stats have suffered tremendously, but clearly Palmer still has gas in that old motor. In 2011 Palmer was placed as the leader of the Raider offense after the season-ending injury to Jason Campbell. Carson was efficient during 10 games (nine starts), averaging 275 yards per game, earning him 7th best in the league. The difference now is Carson will be in a Bootleg system with Gregg Knapp (offensive coach), something completely new for the 10 year veteran. Carson Palmer isn’t known for being much of a mobile quarterback, even less so with prior knee work done.

Palmer should be sitting comfortably with the arsenal he will have in 2012. I see him easily reaching 3,500 plus yards. Carson hasn’t reached the 4,000-yard mark since 2007. Of course having the excessive drama in Cincinnati (T.O., Ocho Cinco, Chris Henry) and a season ending injury certainly didn’t help his cause. Now Palmer is rolling with his wide receiver personnel, the fastest group in the league. It makes you think Al Davis was plotting something big when he drafted these kids. This along with a healthy Darren McFadden should elevate Carson Palmer’s game substantially, as much as that pains me to say.

Quick Career Stats
25,447 Pass Yds | 167 Td’s | 116 Int’s | 62.7 Comp% | 86.3 QB Rating

2011 - 2,753 Pass Yds | 13 Td’s | 16 Int’s | 80.5 QB Rating
2010 - 3,970 Pass Yds | 26 Td’s | 20 Int’s | 82.4 QB Rating
2009 - 3,094 Pass Yds | 21 Td’s | 13 Int’s | 83.6 QB Rating
2008 - 731 Pass Yds | 3 Td’s | 4 Int’s | 69.0 QB Rating

Ranking

NFL.com – 20th

People have under-estimated Carson Palmer for a while now. He may not be the same young buck fresh from winning the Heisman Trophy, but he’s a solid player with great mechanics who could’ve used a hand from his key playmakers in Cincy. I have Palmer ranked at 17th. He might seem over the hill (now 32 years old) and could get re-injured after a couple of clean but aggressive tackles, enough to create a world of problems for the vintage quarterback and the Raiders. Now I’m not in support of a “bounty” on his head but he can and should be targeted. Palmer’s INT ratio is high and could start getting rid of the rock early or make mistakes if he hears footsteps.

Scheduled Games

Mon. 9/10 – 7:15 pm @ Oakland (ESPN)

Sun. 12/30 – 1:15 pm @ San Diego (CBS)

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