Dec 16, 2012; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Carson Palmer (3) gestures against the Kansas City Chiefs at the Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports

Raiders: Why Carson Palmer Must Be Released

Carson Palmer is quite a character. After threatening to retire from the Cincinnati Bengals if they did not trade him to another team, he ended up on the West Coast playing for the slumping Oakland Raiders. He has played with Oakland for two seasons now, and with the latest news breaking out that Palmer is “highly unlikely” to restructure his contract for a third time with the Raiders, it looks like his firm attitude will have him gone from yet another team.

Palmer’s first contract restructure came right after Oakland traded for him in 2011, and then he also agreed to a restructured deal last season that helped the Raiders save more than $9 million in salary cap.

The Raiders have already restructured a few contracts this offseason and have also released a few players- most notably  safety Michael Huff and wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey.

So what should the Raiders do? Does anybody think that Palmer deserves $13 million for this upcoming season? Unless he leads the team to a highly unlikely playoff run, then no, he doesn’t deserve all that money. But maybe with all the contract restructures he already agreed to are now frustrating him, and at this point it seems like he just wants to get paid.

Unfortunately, the Raiders might not be willing to give him the money that he is looking for.

This problem isn’t new, as one of the biggest questions this offseason has been what the Raiders will do with Carson Palmer. Palmer, who just finished his first full season with the Raiders, finished his 2012-2013 campaign with 4,018 passing yards  and 22 touchdowns.Those stats sound pretty good when you add in the fact that he was dealing with a handicapped offense for much of the season, as star running back Darren McFadden and wide receivers Jacoby Ford and Denarius Moore all missed a significant amount of time during the season due to lingering injuries.

But at the end of the day, Carson Palmer is a 33-year-old quarterback who has always been dangling between a mediocre and above-average status. With Oakland boasting one of the youngest squads in the NFL, I think it is time for the Raiders to cut Carson Palmer and move along.

Palmer is due over $13 million next season, and with Oakland making so many adjustments to free themselves from the salary cap, it just does not seem likely for them to retain him. Not only that, he does not seem deserving.

To set things straight, I believe that Terrelle Pryor should be the starting quarterback for this young Raiders team. They lack talent up front, so doesn’t a mobile quarterback just sound more logical?  And I can guarantee that Raiders fans are just about fed up with Palmer waiting too long in the pocket to make a play and then getting swallowed up by an opposing defender.

Pryor, the 23-year-old product of Ohio State, brings to the Raiders something that they haven’t had in a while: mobility and versatility at the quarterback position.

With young guys like Cam Newton, Colin Kaepernick, Robert Griffin III, and Russell Wilson all coming into the league and making a name for themselves by evading defenders and buying extra time, Pryor should have all the motivation in the world. Those four players are modern-day proof of quarterbacks who can make plays by using their legs are finally having their time to shine.

In his three years at Ohio State, Pryor racked up 2,164 yards and 17 touchdowns all on the ground. His passing game was also very efficient, as he threw for 6,177 yards and 57 touchdowns.

My point is, Pryor has the skill set to become one of the NFL’s most prolific players. He has often been overlooked in his professional career, as he entered the league via the supplemental draft, and has never really received the right opportunity to work with a solid offensive scheme.

Until now.

After a disastrous year with Greg Knapp as the team’s offensive coordinator, Oakland finally pulled the plug and hired Greg Olson, who is in his 27th season in the coaching profession.

Pryor will be able to start completely fresh with a new offensive coordinator, a young and healthy group of teammates,  and the Raiders will finally be able to move on and turn to a whole new chapter of their franchise.

With Palmer not willing to take a pay cut, why would the Raiders want to pay a sluggish 33-year old a whopping $13 million for the following season?



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Tags: Carson Palmer NFL Oakland Raiders

  • Pauly

    He’s garbage cut him

    • Brian Banifatemi

      Thanks for commenting!

      And yes, we can both agree that Carson Palmer needs to be on his way out of Oakland. Reggie needs to just do it already!

  • Ricky Bobby

    My point him Reggie.

    • Brian Banifatemi

      Thanks for commenting and glad we can agree on this all!

    • Elijah

      If you’re not first, you’re last.

      • Brian Banifatemi

        Amen. Thanks for commenting!

        • Elijah

          This is the reference I was trying to make if you didn’t follow haha

          • goldenbaysports

            Who could forget that scene? Words of wisdom.

          • Brian Banifatemi

            Yeah haha I got it. Classic!

  • Pauly

    Terrel Pryor Let that boy shine

    • Brian Banifatemi

      Amen! Give Pryor the shot that he deserves, the Raiders have nothing to lose.

      Thanks for commenting!

  • Daniel A Martinez

    Cut Palmer, but Pryor is not our guy, yet. If we can pick up a journeyman QB for cheap, we should be alright in rebuilding. Give Pryor a shot, but make him earn the starting gig.

    • Brian Banifatemi

      Good point. Competing for the startin job would e good for Pryor, but ultimately, I believe Pryor is our guy.

      Thanks for commenting!

  • mccall316

    There is no way to trade Palmer when the Raiders have zero leverage. You have to cut him even though the penalty is some dead cap. You play pryor for one year and don’t draft Smith. If Pryor fails to produce, then you either start over with a new rookie qb or sign Josh Freeman who may not be coming back to Tampa after next season. If the Raiders want to find a veteran qb to back up Pryor, how about the guy that should have never been let go in the first place, Jason Campbell. The trade for Palmer did way more harm then good and I’m finally noticing other fans see that. The gamble didn’t pay off, cost the team 2 high draft picks instead of heading into the next season with the same core group and a healthy Campbell.

    • Brian Banifatemi


      Trading Campbell pushed the Raiders back a step.

      And at this point, they need to just see what Pryor can do for them, which I believe is a lot.

      Rebuilding is in full swing!

      Thanks for commenting!

  • Derrick Thompson

    I think that if we were set up for a playoff run, then keep Palmer, but given the current rebuilding situation we gotta go with the youth movement. We have nothing to lose in giving Pryor a shot. There is no question about his athletic ability. What is yet to be seen is his decision making and vision to find the open man. For the people that think we should draft Geno Smith, I don’t think he would put us in any better position than Pryor would. With the pressing needs on defense and O line I don’t think Reggie is thinking QB with our 1st or 3rd pick so we may end up putting it all on Pryor with a journeyman type or unherralded rookie from the late rounds on the bench. I’m not quite as confident in Pryor as you are Brian but I do think it is time to see what he can do!

    • Brian Banifatemi

      Yes, I am pretty confident in Pryor but its because he deserves a shot! And right now the Raiders have nothing to lose.

      Drafting Geno Smith would definitely be taking a step back, we need to use our draft picks wisely to fill other gaps.

      Thanks for commenting!

  • Pridenpoise

    I really thought Carson was going to take a pay cut, and try and help this team out. I think Palmer had a decent year and it would have been nice to have him around for at least another season ( at a reduced salary obviously ). So I guess it is time to move on and give Pryor a shot, if things don’t work out we draft a QB next year. I just hope the Raiders don’t make the mistake of taking Geno with the third pick, we have to many holes to fill and that pick is better to be used on defence. We will be in a better position next year, with draft picks salary cap and knowing if we have a QB we can go forward with. So I say we take Floyd with that third pick.

    • Brian Banifatemi

      Yeah, I thought Palmer would be more open to a paycut too. I guess he doesn’t want to restructure for a third straight year.

      And I definitely agree that Geno Smith is not the answer. Oakland’s defense has too many holes and too many deficiencies to take a risk at a quarterback with te 3rd pick. Pryor deserves his shot to lead this team.

      Thanks for commenting!