May 14, 2013; Tempe, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer (3) and wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald (11) looks on during organized team activities at the Cardinals Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona Cardinals: Projecting Carson Palmer's stats

Carson Palmer is the new sheriff in town for the Arizona Cardinals this season. For many Cardinals’ fans Palmer has restored hope in them after suffering horrendous quarterback play three years in a row. Fans were used to and spoiled with the resurrection of Kurt Warner’s career. Fans cringe at the sound of hearing names like John Skelton, Derek Anderson, and Max Hall just to name some who were picked to replace Warner and failed miserably. 

Warner played at a elite level with a subpar offensive line, old running back, and a elite wide receiver. He took a mediocre football team and turned them into a Super Bowl contender. He had them one pass deflection away from hoisting the Lombardi trophy and bringing jubilation to a town where sport franchises were really struggling at the time. Suns had been dominated like always by their rival the San Antonio Spurs, and the Diamondbacks didn’t even make the playoffs.

Palmer has some mighty big shoes to fill here in the desert. The Cardinals are by far more talented than the team that surrounded Warner in 2008. A upgraded offensive line, two young running backs, and a monster defense Palmer is in postion to succeed. One problem is the division has improved drastically since 2008, and it will allow fans to see just how far the Cardinals are to returning to the playoffs.

One thing that shocked me is just how similar Warner’s and Palmer’s stats are. Palmer will likely surpass Warner this year in passing yards and touchdown passes this year, only trailing him by 2,879 yards and 19 touchdowns. For the Cardinals to be a playoff team Palmer doesn’t have to put up stats like Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, and Drew Brees. If Palmer can match his season totals from last season of 4,018 yards, 22 touchdowns, and 14 interceptions the Cardinals are a playoff team in my book.

I expect Palmer to put up better numbers this season if he can stay healthy. Now he isn’t a long term solution for Arizona, but if they can get solid production and have a young prospect behind him for the next three years it’s a win for the Cardinals organization. No doubt in my mind if Jonathan Cooper pans out on the line that the Cardinals are a few more elite offensive linemen, a stable running back, and a franchise quarterback away from Super Bowl contenders.

Palmer’s final stat line will be 4,147 passing yards, 25 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, and Rob Housler have the potential to reach 1,000 receiving yards each. Palmer has the weapons he just has to feed them, and with guys like Fitzgerald and Floyd who can catch the ball in traffic it will hopefully help keep Palmer’s interception total down. Don’t be surprised if Palmer passes his career high of 4,131 passing yards this season he’s never had a guy named Fitzgerald going out for passes.

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  • Bill Doerr

    Palmer should easily surpass his 2012 stats with the offensive weapons he has in Arizona. Last season Palmer became one of only 12 QBs in History to have a 4K+ yard season despite not having one 1,000+ yard receiver. He had one of the worst receiver groups in the NFL in Oakland , outright droping his pass’s n running the wrong route’s.

    He should do big things in 2013. NFL Network n ESPN Analysts & Experts think he will easily throw over 4k+ yards , 25+TDs and complete over 62% of his pass’s( He has never completed under 61% in a full year). Most Fantasy Leagues including mine have him projected at 28 TDs and 14 INTs. He has started 9 seasons , including 2011 when he came in mid-season despite not knowing Oaklands offense or PLAYBOOK n still threw for almost 3k yards n 13TDs, and he has completed only 6 full 16 game seasons of the 9. In those full seasons he AVGs 28TDs n 14INTs. With a career 62.5% comp percentage , Almost 30k passing yards , 190TDs-130INTs , & a passer rating of 86 , he has better career regular season stats than Eli Manning. Also I did chart since 2010 , and he has done more w/less offensive weapons in one less game , Than Sam Bradford has since he came into the league. Both Only played in 10 games in 2011 , but Palmer came into a offensive system he didn’t have the first clue about into a playbook he didn’t know and still produced, here is the chart.
    Sam Bradford:

    58% Completion Percentage 9,378 Passing Yards 6.26 YDs-Pass-Avg 45 TDs 42.3QBR 77.3 Passer Rating

    (2012)16GP 59.5% CMP% 3702YDS 6.72 AVG 21TD 13INT 4FUM 82.6 Passer Rating

    ( Bradford had Far better WRs n RBs as well)

    Carson Palmer: ( I did the math using his last 3 seasons to get these stat’s)

    61% Completion Percentage 10,741 Passing Yards 7.42 YD-Pass-Avg 61TDs 50.26QBR 82.73 Passer Rating

    (2012)15GP 61.1% CMP% 4018YDS 7.11 AVG 22TDs 14INTs 5FUM 85.5 Pass Rating

    As you can clearly see Carson Palmer far outplays Bradford since 2010. Palmer had no where near the weapons the past 3 years that he will have in Arizona. 2012 First round Pick Mike Floyd and Fitz should have 20+ TD Catch Alone, and Floyd should have around 1,000 or more receiving yards this season, Fitz should have 1400+ for like the 5th time in his career. Andre Roberts is a also a HUGE factor and Rob Housler with his 4.40 40 speed , and excellent hands are prime for a breakout season. The Cardinals also are expected to have a really, really good run game in 2013. They went out & drafted 2 of the best RBs in the draft , in the 4th and 6th rated RBs in Stanford’s All-Time Leading Rusher Stephan Taylor & Andre Ellington. Ryan Williams is running like he did before his injury for the 1st time since his 2011 injury ,and is 100% healthy, and he needs to produce or one of the rookies , (I think Stephan Taylor) Will easily surpass him on the depth chart for playing time. The Cardinals also signed Rashard Mendenhall , who has multiple 1k+ yard seasons , is 100% healthy , is only 25 y/o w/ a SB under his belt already, and Bruce Arians has already named him the #1 starting RB putting that baby to bed quick. Mendenhall is very dangerous , and was recently voted by the NFL Network as the top under the radar FA pick-up . With the Cardinals top defense and now having a explosive offense to match there is no doubt in my mind if it all comes together for the Cardinals , The Close games fall their way , they will be a contender in this division in 2013 & Finish 10-6 or 11-5. Palmer was a huge pick-up , & with the starters back on the OL , a far improved interior line and run game, the Cardinals are no joke in 2013.

    • Edgar Valenzuela

      So do you think he can pass his career high of 28 touchdowns and get into the mid 30′s? I think he will lead us to the playoffs but he doesn’t have to put up jaw dropping numbers to do so because of the talent surrounding him. 11 and 5 would be great can’t wait for football season to start. Thanks for reading again man!

  • RoleyAnderson

    Everything said by Bill is exactly right. The Cardinals are definitely a sleeper coming into this year!

    I’d like to add this though:

    1) Fitzgerald, Floyd, and Roberts could be the best NFL receiving core in the NFC West,

    2) Mendenhall, Williams, Taylor, and Ellington is a solid running backs core,

    3) the offense is switching to a zone blocking scheme in which running backs flourish,

    4) Housler is a prototypical 6’5″ tight end with good hands that
    (along with the receivers) has had poor quarterback play throughout his

    5) Palmer has put up great numbers (comparable to Joe Flacco) for a
    quarterback who’s been on teams with mediocre talent at wide receiver
    and tight end,

    6) the offensive line has all it’s starters coming back and the
    rookies have shown huge improvement (just look at Bobbie Massie) AND we
    now have Jonathan Cooper replacing Adam Snyder (just repeating his name
    makes me throw up a little…),

    7) the coaching staff is a HUGE upgrade going from Ken
    Whisenhunt/Mike Miller to Bruce Arians (Coach of the Year 2012, Top-5
    Playcaller)/Tom Moore calling plays and game planning,

    8) we now have 3 offensive line coaches including Harold Goodwin as
    our offensive coordinator (just goes to show how important the new
    regimen is taking the o-line),

    9) Arians has been revolutionizing the way our team practices by
    holding dual-practice fields for starters and second-stringers, giving
    everybody considerably more reps in practice, and using the headsets in
    OTAs to communicate with Palmer, both of which are common-sense ways to
    improve the efficiency of practice

    10) Palmer and Arians is a perfect match, because Palmer can throw an accurate deep pass to Fitz, Floyd, Roberts and Arians loves to call for them at least 6 times per game on average.

    Overall, it’s going to be an exciting year in Arizona – undoubtedly the most exciting since we went to the Superbowl. If we make it to the playoffs, then Seahawks and 9ers fans are going to be up in arms at how the lowly Cardinals got the best of them….Can’t wait!