If the Cincinnati Bengals are not willing to make serious changes within their organization, it appears Carson Palmer will try to make them himself. ESPN’s Chris Mortenson reported on Sunday night that Palmer has demanded a trade from the Bengals and is willing to retire if they refuse to deal him. Palmer is under contract through 2014, and Mort claims several sources told him the quarterback is comfortable with where he’s at financially and would have no problem considering retirement.
At the moment, it looks like the retirement card could be necessary. Bengals owner Mike Brown wants to keep his franchise quarterback and said he has no plans to trade him, despite admitting that Palmer asked for a trade about a week ago. Palmer may have struggled the past couple seasons, but he was once an elite talent and ownership has never really done much to build a winning team around him. After a 4-12 season, who can blame him for wanting to skip town?
Brown is saying what he needs to say at the moment, but he’d be silly to call Palmer’s bluff with the lack of quality starting quarterbacks around the league. Plenty of teams are in the market for a quarterback and this year’s draft class got a little thinner with Andrew Luck’s decision to return to school. The 49ers, Seahawks, Cardinals, Panthers, and Dolphins are just a handful that come to mind. Despite the years and money Palmer is owed, there will be a few teams out there willing to give up a quality draft pick for his services.