Arizona Cardinals: Why Carson Palmer will win MVP

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Aug 15, 2015; Glendale, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer in the first quarter against the Kansas City Chiefs in a preseason NFL football game at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Palmer came out in the first preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs and put on a clinic in his only drive.  He hit running back Andre Ellington in stride and all of a sudden the team was inside the five-yard line just a few plays into the 2015 season.  That’s all Cardinals fans had to see.

Yes, Palmer struggled a bit in the next two preseason games against the Chargers and Oakland Raiders.  However much of that can be contributed to the offensive line woes the Cardinals all of the sudden exhibited.

So you ask, if the offensive line can’t hold up, how will Palmer?  It’s a legitimate question and one that has an easy answer as far as I’m concerned.  The offensive line will get it together.  No, they won’t be perfect and yes Palmer will get hit and get sacked.  Every quarterback does.

However Palmer last season threw 11 touchdowns to just three interceptions, two of which you could easily fault the receiver, in his six games.  His quarterback rating was 95.3, which was his highest since 2005 with the Cincinnati Bengals.  That followed a quarterback rating of 94.9 over his last 10 games in 2013, which was brought greatly down thanks to a four-interception game at Seattle in 2013.  His rating that day was 48.8 but he still managed to win in Seattle with a huge fourth-quarter touchdown pass.

The point is here that he can win even when he isn’t on and even when he is really off.  He is the leader of the Arizona Cardinals.  He’s bought into the system and Arians and the rest of the team has bought into him.

To me, being indispensable means being valuable and you can argue that no one player is more valuable to his team than Palmer is to the Arizona Cardinals.  Yahoo sports projects Palmer to throw for more than 4,100 yards with 25 touchdowns and 15 interceptions.  I will take it a step further and say he throws for 4,500 yards with 30 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.  He has the team around him to accomplish those numbers.

He has the ability to throw even more touchdowns especially given the receiving weapons around him but the Cardinals are also trying to revive a complacent running game.  That certainly will detract from any passing yardage Palmer gains but I still see a very successful Palmer behind center in 2015.

He’s come off of injury before but he has longevity and if he stays healthy likely has a couple of seasons still left in Arizona.  It won’t be easy for him this season.  He faces some tough competition this season but he can’t be MVP if he isn’t beating the NFL’s best either.

That being said, everyone who has anything negative to say about Palmer, go ahead, you have that right.  In the end though I think you’ll just look silly all the while Palmer is making a number of opposing defenses look silly.  There will be tough games but the good games will far outweigh the bad.

Carson Palmer is more than a stop-gap quarterback many people called him back in 2013 and even now into 2015.  He is much more than that.  He will lead the Cardinals to the playoffs.  He is your 2015 NFL MVP.