Carson Palmer Trade Talk: Does His Contract Make It A Really Tough Deal?

Tom EdringtonSenior Writer IJanuary 24, 2011

Would any NFL team want to pick up Carson Palmer's massive contract?
Would any NFL team want to pick up Carson Palmer's massive contract?Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Carson Palmer is not a happy camper.

We have all heard by now that he wants out of the city named for Cincinnatus.

The big guy wants to leave the Bengals in his rear view mirror.

He's talking ultimatums, retirement, whatever it takes to try and force this thing. But the fact is that this is the same Cincinnati franchise that bumped it's head a few years back and paid this guy so much money that any sort of trade is going to be very, very difficult, if not impossible.

Let's consider this for a moment.

This is the same guy the Bengals handed a whopping $15 million back on Feb. 16, 2006. As if that wasn't enough to pad his bank account, he got another $9 million on January 1 of 2007.

He has a contract that runs through 2014 and he's scheduled to make a base of $11.5 million this year, $11.5 million in 2012, $13 million in 2013 and a bank-busting, Brett Favreish $14 million in 2014.

So we ask you this question, you're an NFL General Manager, do you want to pay that kind of money for a 31-year-old quarterback with a gimpy knee and a questionable elbow?

Which now begs the question, what team would consider such a "trade?"

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The intelligent answer is none, not with this 80,000-pound elephant of a contract.

You've heard teams thrown out there for conversation sake like San Francisco, Arizona, Carolina, all of whom are very needy when it comes to competent signal callers. Seattle has been mentioned as well.

Do you really think Jim Harbaugh wants to take on an aging, non-dependable guy who's body is more breakable than sea worthy?

With the first draft pick, does Carolina really want to go the "old guy" route or is there still hope for Jimmy Clausen?

Arizona's already blown its cookies on one USC guy, do they want another who is older and more fragile?

As things stand today, it would make no sense for anyone to "trade" for Palmer. Besides, what could or would Cincinnati demand?  A sixth round draft pick?

The answer to all of this is that if Palmer really does insist on retiring, then the Bengals may be forced to simply cut the guy loose when the time comes.

At that point, some team would have interest with the proviso of a new, more sensible contract.

The Bengals have made Palmer a really, really rich man and the two have had their moments, albeit not enough of them to warrant the kind of contract they extended him a few years ago.

The No. 1 pick in the 2003 draft had the physical tools but now those tools are simply unreliable and if you want to toss an 18-game season into the equation, there's really no way he'd make it that far.

Sure, he's "only" 31 but you're looking at the equivalent of a really fancy car, that looks nice but there's a lot of mileage on that jewel and the cost is a nightmare.

Yes, Carson Palmer wants out, and he's threatening to retire if he doesnt get his wish.

But if you were going to write him a check for $11.5 million this year, would you be losing sleep over it?

Probably not.

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