Get ready for another Carson Palmer drama
When owners and teams treat football like a business, media and fans shrug.
When players do, it’s regarded as an affront to the integrity of the game.
It’s not fair, but that’s the way it is. And Raiders quarterback Carson Palmer
needs to brace himself for that reaction as he tries to force his way out of Oakland.
It’s obvious Palmer wants out. Two years ago, he finagled his exit
from Cincinnati by feigning retirement. The strategy looked to be a
failure until Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell broke his collarbone
and former Raiders coach Hue Jackson lost his damn mind, giving up
a first-round pick and a second-round pick for a quarterback who isn’t
the guy he used to be.
Now, Palmer is turning up his nose at $10 million from the Raiders,
which sets the stage for the Raiders eventually to cut him — and for
Palmer to play for someone else.
As Mike Silver of Yahoo! Sports explains it, Palmer wants to play for a contender,
even if it means being a backup. (Cough . . . Seahawks and Pete
Carroll . . . cough.) Of course, Palmer won’t get $10 million to be a
backup, but his willingness to walk away from football in order to get
out of Cincinnati proves that he’d be willing to walk away from $10
million in order to get a shot at winning.
Palmer’s posture also reflects a belief that, despite the hiring of
G.M. Reggie McKenzie and coach Dennis Allen, Palmer doesn’t see the
silver-and-black bus getting turned around in the immediate future.
Otherwise, he’d gladly take $10 million to stay put.
The problem is that the Raiders currently hold all the cards. With
no seven-figure trigger in Palmer’s deal, the $13 million doesn’t become
fully guaranteed until Week One, which means the Raiders can cut him
much later in the offseason, if they draft a quarterback early — or if
they eventually decide Terrelle Pryor can get the job done. The only
risk the Raiders are taking is that, ifPalmer drops a dumbbell on his foot
or pops an Achilles tendon in offseason conditioning drills or otherwise
suffers a season-ending injury while on the clock, the Raiders will owe
Palmer his full salary.
That could set the stage for a Steve McNair-style lockout. Even
without Palmer being barred from the building (which would violate the
CBA), Palmer is making his second power play in two years.
When a team does it, we applaud. Fair or not, Palmer should prepare
for the jeers and the boos and the accusations of being a chronic
Edited by kelly, 28 March 2013 - 12:52 PM.