Uneven quarterback play hurting the Arizona Cardinals

Carson Palmer has regressed this season and the Arizona Cardinals need to realize they’ll never win a Super Bowl with him

Back on April 2, 2013, the Arizona Cardinals made a great move. That was the day that the club acquired quarterback Carson Palmer. After suffering through Derek Anderson, Max Hall, Kevin Kolb and John Skelton, the arrival of Palmer gave Cards’ fans hope.

Granted, they were getting a quarterback that had never won a playoff game. Much of his career was spent with the Cincinnati Bengals, one of the most poorly managed organizations in sports. He left Cincy for the Oakland Raiders, another club who was managed poorly when he played for them.

The thinking was that pairing Palmer with new Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians would produce good results. Palmer’s size and strong arm were perfect for Arians’ difficult scheme. A marriage made in heaven, if you will.

After a so-so start, the team went on to win 10 games in 2013 with Palmer at the helm. In 2014, he had mastered the offense and was balling before suffering a season-ending knee injury. He was even better in 2015, finally getting a playoff win and advancing all the way to the NFC Championship.

So far this season, Palmer has had his moments, but has been terribly inconsistent. When Palmer is at his worst, his biggest flaw is turning the ball over at inopportune times. The bone-headed plays were few and far between the last two seasons, but this year they’ve returned.

In nine starts this season, Palmer has thrown ten picks and has also fumbled three times. The reason for his regression is anyone’s guess. Not all of the turnovers have been his fault, but 13 is a big number nevertheless.

The front office signed the 14-year pro to an extension in the offseason, but do they even want him to return next year? Although the offensive line has been decimated, Palmer still has many skill players surrounding him. There’s little doubt that he should be performing better than he has.

Management may have no choice but to bring Palmer back for the 2017 season. They do not have a youngster waiting in the wings, and Drew Stanton is not the answer.

But then again, who knows what the offseason will bring? Is it possible that the next starting quarterback of the Cards isn’t currently on their roster? Tony Romo, anyone?

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