Cincinnati Bengals plan to keep Carson Palmer despite approaching trade deadline

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer looks at two receivers as he passes against the San Diego Chargers in the first half during their NFL football game in San Diego, California December 20, 2009. REUTERS/Mike Blake (United States – Tags: SPORT FOOTBALL)

Cincinnati Bengals owner Mike Brown reiterated on Thursday that he has no plays to trade disgruntled quarterback Carson Palmer.

“I don’t have anything more to say on that,” Brown told the media. “I’ve had my say on that, and it remains all there is to say.”

Following the team’s 4-12 season in 2010, Palmer requested a trade on January 23, 2011. Brown turned down the request almost immediately and Palmer retaliated by saying he’s prepared to retire if necessary. The veteran quarterback hasn’t filed his retirement papers with the league but he remains steadfast that he won’t play another down for the Bengals.

Cincinnati has seemingly found its quarterback of the future in 2011 second round pick Andy Dalton, who has compiled a 78.7 QB rating through five games this season. Thus, with the trade deadline coming up, many have speculated that the Bengals would be willing to move Palmer. Miami, Seattle and Indianapolis are all in need of a quarterback, so Cincinnati has trade partners if it eventually decides to deal the former USC product.

That said, Brown has made it perfectly clear that he is not willing to deal Palmer, who won’t become a free agent until 2015. If the trade deadline passes, the next chance Palmer has to get out of Cincinnati won’t be until March of 2012 when the new league year begins.

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Bengals owner reiterates that team won’t trade Carson Palmer

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer (L) is sacked by Oakland Raiders defensive tackle Tank Johnson during the second half of their NFL football game in Oakland, California November 22, 2009. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith (UNITED STATES SPORT FOOTBALL)

Bengals owner Mike Brown reiterated on Monday that he has no intentions of honoring Carson Palmer’s trade demand.


“We don’t plan to trade Carson,” Brown said Monday at the NFL Spring Meeting. “He’s important to us. He’s a very fine player, and we do want him to come back. If he chooses not to, he’d retire. And we would go with Andy Dalton, the younger player we drafted, who’s a good prospect.

“Ideally, we’d have both of them. That’d be the best way to go forward. If we don’t have Carson, we’ll go with Andy.”

Neither Brown nor Palmer is giving in here. The Bengals would probably prefer to play Palmer for a year or two before Dalton is ready to take over, but Palmer seems hell bent on leaving. At this point Dalton seems like a lock to start Week 1 of the season, although situations change all the time in the NFL so you never know.

It’ll be interesting to see if the Bengals are the ones to crack first and talk to Palmer about restructuring his deal so they can trade him. Because I don’t see anyone dealing for a 31-year-old quarterback with poor arm strength and paying him $20-plus million over the next two years.

Marvin Lewis aware that Palmer won’t be back next season?

Cincinnati Bengals’ head coach Marvin Lewis talks to quarterbacks Carson (L) and Jordan Palmer as they play the Baltimore Ravens’ at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore on January 2, 2011. UPI/Kevin Dietsch

One unnamed NFL GM tells CBS Sports that head coach Marvin Lewis “knows” that quarterback Carson Palmer won’t play for the Bengals next season.

Essentially, the question is this: Can [Lewis] convince Brown to deal Palmer for draft picks, players or both to get something of value this season? Most people believe he cannot, and that was reiterated by our GM who said he’s certain Cincinnati won’t budge on Palmer because of what it would mean for others.

But he also said that if Palmer is true to his word and retires it might increase his value for 2012, with teams believing that if he has that much of a conviction, is that disciplined, is that true to himself, then he’s exactly the sort of quarterback they’d like as a leader.

“He can still play, and he can still play at a high level,” the GM said.

It’s kind of a moot point to talk about potential trades seeing as how we’re in the middle of a lockout but this Palmer situation won’t die down. Making matters more complex is that if the Bengals were willing to trade him, it would make sense to do so before the draft. But since teams can’t make trades right now, the Bengals are stuck.

It cannot be overstated: the Bengals have a mess on their hands here. Brown doesn’t want to set a precedent for other disgruntled players to follow Palmer and demand trades just because they want out of Cincinnati. But if Palmer follows through and retires, then obviously the best recourse for the Bengals is to trade him in order to get something in return. And if Lewis knows that Palmer doesn’t want to be his quarterback, then I would have to assume that he wants someone else in place who does.

For now, at least the Bengals have plenty of time on their hands to figure out what they want to do with Palmer. Because there doesn’t appear to be a quick resolution to the labor mess.

Bengals to use top pick on a quarterback now?

Cincinnati Bengals starting quarterback Carson Palmer (9) throws against the Indianapolis Colts during the second quarter at Lucas Oil Field in Indianapolis on November 14, 2010. UPI /Mark Cowan

According to the team’s official website, the Bengals are taking Carson Palmer’s threat to be traded or retire “quite seriously” and will kick the tires on all kinds of quarterback options this offseason. One option might be to draft a quarterback with the No. 4 overall pick so that they’re not stuck with Carson’s brother Jordan at the top of their depth chart next season.

It figures that this report would surface three days after I put together a post titled, “Three reasons why Carson Palmer will remain a Bengal.” Timing is everything in life and mine is somewhere between horrendous and awful.

If the Bengals do decide to draft a quarterback, either Blaine Gabbert or Cam Newton could be available in the first round depending on what the Panthers and Bills do ahead of them. Many mock drafts have Carolina selecting Gabbert with the top overall pick and Buffalo picking Newton at No. 3. One option the Bengals have is to see how the first three picks play out and then go from there.

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Could Carson Palmer bring back a first rounder in a trade?

Cincinnati Bengals’ quarterback Carson Palmer fumbles the ball as he scrambles against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore on January 2, 2011. UPI/Kevin Dietsch

According to writer Geoff Hobson, at least one NFL GM believes that quarterback Carson Palmer could fetch a first-round pick from a “playoff ready” team if Cincinnati owner Mike Brown makes him available.

One NFL general manager said Tuesday the Bengals can’t be a hurry to trade Palmer if they don’t have an experienced quarterback “in the pipeline,” which they don’t. He also said he thought Palmer could net a first-round pick from a team that is “playoff ready.”

“I don’t think his skills have declined. I think he’s got everything you want,” The GM said. “But for whatever reason, I don’t think he’s ever put it all together and from what I can tell, they’ve tried to surround him with good players.”

Either this GM was drunk when Hobson spoke with him or he’s someone within the Bengals organization that is trying to create a market for Palmer this offseason. Because anyone with functioning vision can see that Palmer isn’t worth a first rounder. He may have finished the 2010 season on a high note, but two weeks of good play isn’t enough to entice a team to part with a first-rounder in exchange for a fading quarterback that’s owed $50 million over the next four years.

But for a moment, let’s at least entertain the idea that Palmer would bring back a first rounder. These are the teams that could be in the market for a quarterback next season: Redskins, Bills, Dolphins, Cardinals, 49ers, Raiders, Vikings, Browns, Panthers, Jaguars and Titans.

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