As many of you may know, I was originally extremely supportive of Carson Palmer during the 2010 season.
While many sectors of Bengal Nation was ready to chase number nine out of town on a rail, I considered such talk plain lunacy. Blogs and message boards throughout the internet openly debated whether Palmer had lost his fastball and his mojo. They pointed to stats that showed a career-high 20 picks, many of which were returned for touchdowns, and at least 3 of which led directly to losses. They pointed out that dozens of other passes were almost intercepted, that passes seemed to sail high and hang in the air, and that despite being armed with a bevy of talented receivers, he could not take the offense out of their doldrums.
Meanwhile, I argued for calm. The man has a Heisman trophy after all, and led one of the most potent offenses in the league just a few years earlier. I pointed out that quarterbacks don’t even hit their prime until their post-30 years, and after suffering through David Klingler, Akili Smith, Neil O’Donnell, Jeff Blake, and Scott Mitchell, maybe fans should appreciate the devil you know.
I now humbly ask you for your kind forgiveness. I was wrong.
My opinion of Palmer changed radically when his “trade me or I’ll retire” ultimatum came out. I came to the conclusion that the team should acquiesce to his demands and move on. (Of course, stubborn old man Brown seems unmoved, but that’s another venting session).
Now comes word from Clark Judge via a Palmer confidant (the coward doesn’t speak himself) that the quarterback is “at peace” with his decision, and is fine with retiring from football. He also quotes another team’s head coach (50-to-1 it’s Pete Carroll) that Palmer is “not going to play there again.”
It takes a coward of the highest order to be willing to:
- Turn his back on 40 million dollars
- Fail to fulfill contractual obligations
- Leave behind the game he loves
- Give up on his teammates
- Disregard his legacy
- Accept failure
What kind of a man would do that? What red-blooded leader would be at “peace” with that kind of decision?
Palmer is a gutless weakling, and he’s burned his bridges with the fan base. The damage is irrevocable, and he deserves whatever fate old man Brown decides for him.
As for me, I don’t care who quarterbacks the Bengals in 2010 as long as it’s NOT Palmer. I will cheer for anyone from Cam Newton to Dan Lefevour before I’ll cheer for him. We can go 4-12 in 2011 with one of those guys just as easily as we can with CP under center.
I’m “at peace” with that.
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