By Jeff Fetter: Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians is very pleased with the play of quarterback Carson Palmer in the OTAs and mini-camp for the Cardinals and he’s happy to have him on the team now. Arians says Palmer is throwing the ball very well, and he’s still got the arm to play in the NFL despite the fact that he’s getting up there in age at 33.
The Cardinals picked up Palmer from the Oakland Raiders in a trade during the off season. The Cardinals gave the Raiders a 6th round draft pick in 2013 and a conditional pick in 2014 to get Palmer. This could be a huge blunder for the Raiders if Palmer, 2003 1st round draft choice, ends up having a huge year this season with the Cardinals.
Arians said to NFL.com “[Palmer is] Fantastic. He still has the arm. He can make all the throws.”
In looking at some of the practice video of Palmer working out with the Cardinals offense, you can immediately see Palmer’s arm strength in him throwing the ball effortlessly down field for long touchdown passes to receivers. He’s able to make the long throws so easily without throwing air balls or lobbing it the way that weaker-armed quarterbacks are forced to do due to their lack of arm strength.
Palmer threw for 4,018 yards last season with the Raiders on 345 of 565 pass attempts. What’s impressive about these numbers is that Palmer did all of this without quality receivers on the team. He had a lot of the receivers dropping balls, falling down on routes or simply not having the skills to get to the passes.
In hindsight, it’s surprising what Palmer was able to accomplish with such a motley crew of receivers. This season, Palmer will be throwing to former Pro Bowl wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, who Arians plans on putting in a lot of different areas to give Palmer opportunities to stretch the defenses.