The Arizona Cardinals brought some stability to the quarterback position by trading for former Cincinnati Bengals and Oakland Raiders signal caller Carson Palmer. He supposedly was drawing interest from other teams as well, and was rumored to prefer the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but ultimately restructured his contract to go to Arizona.
But why would anyone choose the lowly Cardinals?
“Because this is hands down, by far, the best opportunity,” Palmer said, via Sports Radio Interviews. “There were a handful of places, but as soon as this organization came up, and you start thinking about the coaching staff they’ve put together and the players they’ve drafted and the players they’ve signed in free agency, absolute, hands down no-brainer. … I know a lot about Arizona. I’ve got a lot of family history. … It just made too much sense from every angle.”
Larry Fitzgerald is certainly an appealing teammate for a quarterback, one of the best wide receivers in the league. Palmer is no stranger to dominant wide receivers having played with Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson, but Fitzgerald is more dominant and less dramatic.
“You know, when you think about that position throughout the league and you think about Larry, Larry’s as professional as they come,” Palmer said praising his new teammate. “Larry’s a businessman who happens to be a phenomenal football player. He does it year in, year out. … He gets better each year, and the opportunity to work with a guy like him, he’s going to rub off on everybody around him. … The trickle-down effect you get from a guy like Larry makes average receivers really good and good receivers great. I’m going to learn a lot from Larry.”
And Arizona has a new head coach in Bruce Arians, who led the Indianapolis Colts with a rookie quarterback through tremendous circumstances into the playoffs.
“I know he’s aggressive. I know he doesn’t want to put together 14-, 18-, 19-play drives and try to beat people that way. He wants to score; he wants to put the ball up and down the field. He wants to score a point per minute of possession. He believes in ball security and stopping the run on defense. He was in Pittsburgh and I played against him a bunch and saw his offenses move the ball up and down the field. … When you have a chance to step into your throws and do some of the things he’s done in the past, protection-wise, you’re just giving those playmakers on the outside more and more opportunities to do what they do.”