Friday, September 5, 2008

Does Palmer Deserve More Blame For This Mess?

I'm just going to come out and say it: Carson Palmer deserves significantly more blame than he's receiving.

Sure, Mike Brown and Marvin Lewis are disasters in their own right, but Palmer isn't exactly innocent - although he never receives any blame. Which makes me wonder if anyone actually watched Bengals games last year.

Do not remind me about the shoddy line play or pedestrian running game - I don't want to hear it. I've taken it all into account and I still think Palmer isn't doing his part. He's (supposedly) a star QB...he's far and away the highest paid player on the roster...he needs to step up his game. He needs to stop hanging his head after every pick...he needs to chew out a lineman (ala Dan Marino) when he gets sacked...he needs to find a way to make it happen when it isn't his day. The great ones do that. The tough ones do that. The leaders do that. Problem is, I'm not sure Palmer fits into any of those categories.

Plain and simple: If Palmer is to be considered an elite quarterback, he must win games.

2005 was three years ago, but it feels like an eternity.

5-11, here we come!

(Note: I wrote this thing three different ways this morning, but it never felt right. I typed probably 2,000 words before ultimately settling on the succinct route. Hope I didn't disappoint those of you who wanted a lengthy Bengals preview. There's always the regular season.)

-Brad Spieser (