The Carson Palmer trade cannot look any worse than it does right now, and it’s clear that the quarterback is rusty having just come over to the Oakland Raiders from the Cincinnati Bengals less than a week ago. That said, it’s important to remember that time and momentum are still with the Raiders and that the team is still in the hunt for the division lead. Although it might be hard to convince anyone close to the Raiders at this point that there’s good news to take from today.
From here, the Raiders enjoy the benefit of a bye week and they could certainly use it. They’re banged up at this point with Rolando McClain and Darren McFadden both significant members of the team who were injured to one degree or another during the Chiefs contest. The quarterbacks combined to throw zero touchdowns and three interceptions apiece and, at this point, Palmer didn’t look any better than Boller. However, he’s just arrived and the bye week will help acclimate him to the team.
This shows more than anything how valuable it is to have a player in a consistent system. As talented as an NFL player can be any any position, it’s nearly impossible to just come in and succeed consistently from the outset. Each system is tailored toward specific players with specific timing. Carson Palmer needs time to learn and adjust to those facets of the game that he simply has not had time to do. Hue Jackson was looking idiotic for keeping Palmer on the sidelines through the entire first half, but this is likely something he envisioned — knowing the game against the Chiefs wasn’t simply a matter of pitch and catch with the Raiders receivers.
From here on out, the pressure will be on Palmer to perform. The Raiders were aiming for the playoffs before he arrived and they certainly expect nothing less in Oakland after the trade. He must prove he’s the future because the Raiders mortgaged the future. But it’s clear that he will get better with time and the Raiders have already proven they can win on any given Sunday this year so far. While they just laid an egg against the Chiefs, that doesn’t necessarily insinuate what must happen for the rest of this season.