Coming out of USC, Carson Palmer was taken No. 1 in the 2003 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. The early returns were positive. In 2003 Palmer led the Bengals to an 11-5 record and a playoff appearance. But since that breakout season, Palmer has struggled with injuries and Cincinnati has floundered.
Now the 29-year-old Palmer appears poised for another solid year and making the Cincinnati Bengals his team.
The following are questions I would ask in an interview with Palmer:
1. What has the transition been like coming from a winning collegiate program in USC to the Bengals who have struggled for the last 15 years?
1A. Was it difficult going from the beach lifestyle of Southern California to the blue collar football crazed state of Ohio?
2. The 2005 season was a playoff season; how do you and the team return to that level?
3. You have suffered two major injuries with a knee injury and now elbow injury. Have you fully recovered from those injuries and have they altered your style of play?
4. How difficult was it to sit and watch last year as the team struggled offensively?
5. The issues with Chad Ochocinco are still lingering. Is this an issue that has divided the team?
6. You recently spoke about Ochocinco missing the recent minicamp. What brought that on?
6A. How is your relationship with Ochocinco and have you personally spoke with him?
7. People have been critical of your leadership style. Do you believe this criticism is warranted and are you seeking to become more of a vocal leader?
8. Begnals owner Mike Brown has been known as a hands-on owner. What is your relationship with Brown? Has he given you any indication that the Bengals are ready to make you the team leader and build a team around you?
9. Has it been difficult adjusting to all the new faces?
10. How’s the chemistry between you, Laveranues Coles, and Chris Henry?
11. How’s the relationship between you and Marvin Lewis? Is he an active part of the offense?
12. With the new offensive line and a healthy Carson Palmer, is offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski ready to re-open the play book? If so, how?
13. What are your personal and team goals for this season?