Yes, Boomer Esiason can bring it. Like him or not, the former Cincinnati Bengals signal caller has never double-pumped or taken a knee on speaking his mind.
So it’s hardly shocking he’s weighing in on PalmerGate.
Oddbounces free college intern Jimmy Jyms has learned Esiason soundly rejected offers from TV’s Oprah and The View – instead choosing to speak about Palmer with Bengalton, D.C.’s Geoff Hobson of Bengals.com.
As Bengals fanaticals, we’re just trying to figure out what’s wrong with the Bengals offense, the passing game and Palmer, right? Palmer’s detractors point to everything from “he’s just lost it” to “his arm is gone” to “he makes bad decisions.” On the surface, I see their points.
But nothing here makes sense, and never did. I keep reading that Palmer’s lost arm strength, but I don’t see it, and never did. So I question whether the “experts” are actually watching all the tape, or only a few game highlights from NFL Channel. Because from my vantage point (granted, the cheap seats), he ain’t lost velocity (one example – the misfire to Ocho in the back of the endzone versus Baltimore. That was a 30-yard, 90-MPH fastball. And he’s almost put a hole through Shipley with a few throws).
Former NFL all-pro QB turned CBS-TV analyst Rich Gannon said he broke down all 122 Palmer passes this season.
“I’ve looked at his mechanics and I don’t see a lot of change. He’s still throwing the ball with velocity,” Gannon said. “I don’t see any indications of the things you see with bad mechanics. He’s not looking at the rush. He’s not bailing out. He’s not shortening his stride. His lower body looks to be fine. I don’t see a guy laboring to get the ball out there.”
I’ve made those same Palmer observations. So what is wrong, Boomer?
“That’s not the Carson Palmer I know,” said Esiason, who sees nothing physically wrong with Palmer. “He looks like he’s lacking confidence back there in the pocket. I don’t know if it’s the new receivers, or the protection, or what. I had my Dave Shula sightings. I had my Reggie Rembert sightings. I had young coaches. And I’m not saying these are any of his problems. I’m just saying every quarterback goes through losing confidence, for whatever reason.”
Ah, lost confidence. Now you’re talking.
So, why does a former all-pro QB who age-wise is in the prime of his career suddenly lose confidence? Does he just wake up one day and for no reason it’s gone? Or could it be from 2005 to 2009 he slowly went from having arguably the best offensive line to one of (if not the) worst? … from having one of the best receiving corps to one of the league’s worst? … from having two of the game’s best deep threats to no deep threats? … from playing in a strong pass-oriented offense to a 2001 Baltimore Ravens run-first type offense? I could go on and on.
Look, guys like me don’t just sell Tupperware on the side, wear speedos and defend Carson Palmer for the fun of it – we got a purpose. And that’s what I hope to see from the Bengals’ offense Sunday in Cleveland. Keep chipping away at the issues facing this team, this offense – and no better way than by keeping alive the Browns’ hope for a perfect 0-16 season.
And hey, if you’re looking to host a Tupperware Party let me know!