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Raiders, Cardinals working on deal to send Palmer to Arizona

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

The Cardinals found their new franchise quarterback.. (Getty Images)
The Cardinals appear to have found their new franchise quarterback. (Getty Images)
Carson Palmer is expected to become the newest member of the Arizona Cardinals in a trade that could be finalized as soon as Monday, according to CBS NFL Insider Jason La Canfora.

Both sides have been deep in talks with Palmer willing to take on a reduced salary in 2013, but a source tells La Canfora that things "have hit a snag" and deal is still not complete. As of Monday evening, the source said it is difficult to say whether the hurdle can be overcome, though there was significant momentum toward a deal through the day.

Palmer spent nearly two forgettable seasons in Oakland on a Raiders team that struggled to a 4-12 record in 2012. The former 2003 first-round pick, set to make $13 million in 2013, wasn't interested in taking a pay cut from the Raiders and is expected to earn $8 million (plus incentives) in Arizona under new coach Bruce Arians. La Canfora reports that compensation is believed to be a sixth- or seventh-rounder.

So what would the Cards get in a 33-year-old quarterback who hasn't looked like a former first overall draft pick since '09, when he led the Bengals to 10 wins and a playoff appearance?

Last season, Palmer ranked 18th in QB efficiency, according to Football Outsiders, which was ahead of Andy Dalton and just behind Joe Flacco. (CBSSports.com's Pete Prisco makes the Palmer-Flacco comparison, pointing out that Palmer isn't nearly the chump many in the media are making him out to be), but he also played on one of the league's worst teams.

Unfortunately, the Cardinals' offensive line was a walking crime scene a season ago, but they have capable skill position players (Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, Rashard Mendenhall), a good defense and an offensive-minded coach in Arians who has had success getting the most out of his quarterbacks (from Peyton Manning to Kelly Holcomb to Ben Roethlisberger to Andrew Luck).

And if the trade is finalized, the Cards won't have to take a quarterback with the seventh overall pick and instead can focus on finding a big body to protect Palmer.

When Arians was asked this offseason about speculation that the organization was eyeing a quarterback early in the draft, he said: "I think all speculators look at need and not the draft board. If you draft for need, you're in trouble. Just because you need one you don't take one if there's a better player there who's going to help your football team. If there's a quarterback who fits the spot in the draft that you put him at, that fits the value, then you take one. That's why I feel very comfortable with our situation right now, with Drew Stanton in our mix. The need value is not there.”

If Arians felt very comfortable with Stanton, he must be having visions of a Super Bowl run with Palmer.

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