ARIZONA CARDINALS

Arizona Cardinals’ Carson Palmer listed as one of NFL’s ‘okayest’ QBs

Jul 23, 2015, 11:16 AM | Updated: 11:17 am

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Just to set the record straight, we’re not totally sure if this is a compliment, an insult, or something in between.

But it is something, we guess.

Over at USA Today’s FTW Blog, Mike Foss put together a piece going over The 5 okayest NFL quarterbacks in 2015. And wouldn’t you know, it, Arizona’s Carson Palmer is tops on the list.

1. CARSON PALMER

Palmer is the quintessential okay quarterback. You look at his 2014 record with the Cardinals, a team resplendent with talent, and you see that he was 6-0, averaging 270 yards, nearly two touchdowns a game and half an interception along with a 95.6 passer rating. Palmer’s season was cut short due to injury, but if you project those numbers out over a 16-game season, you’re looking at season comparable to that of Matthew Stafford or Ryan Tannehill. Without Palmer, Arizona went 5-5, a stark dropoff, but impressive considering they had a fourth-string quarterback for their final three games.

In contrast, Arizona had the ninth-best defense in yards allowed, and fifth-best in points conceded last season. This was a team that won through phenomenal defense and a passable offense. If Palmer stayed healthy, who knows the damage the Cardinals might have done in the playoffs.

It’s true, the Cardinals’ defense was, for the most part, a unit that carried the team for much of the last couple of seasons.

However, as the numbers (and record) indicate, Palmer was doing more than his fair to help the team win games when he was on the field. There’s a reason he has the best winning percentage of any QB since Week 8 2013, and it’s not only because of the defense — Palmer made plays, too.

That’s not to say the 35-year-old should be listed alongside elite passers like Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady or Peyton Manning. But assuming he picks up where he left off last season, saying Palmer is merely OK seems to be underselling him, if only a little.

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