Cardinals could be in trouble without Carson Palmer: Myers

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer suffers a season-ending knee injury Sunday.Rick Scuteri/AP
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer suffers a season-ending knee injury Sunday.

Here are the 10 Things I Learned From Week 10 in the NFL:

1. With Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer suffereing a season-ending ACL tear, Drew Stanton takes over the team with the best record in the NFL and we can play the game of Six Degrees of Separation From Tim Tebow.

The Jets signed Stanton on March 17, 2012 to be Mark Sanchez’ backup. Stanton signed a one-year $1.25 million contract, which included a $500,000 bonus the Jets paid. Stanton was promised he would be the No. 2 QB. Then, the Broncos signed Peyton Manning on March 21 and the next day the Broncos traded Tebow to the Jets and he became the Gang Green’s No. 2 QB. That didn’t work out so well.

Anyway, Stanton wanted out and on March 24, seven days after he signed, the Jets traded him to the Colts.

He stayed one year in Indianapolis as the backup to rookie Andrew Luck, who was drafted with the first overall pick one month after the Colts traded for Stanton. He didn’t get into a game with the Colts and then signed with the Cardinals in 2013. He didn’t get into a game last year, either, as Carson Palmer’s backup.

But he’s started three games this season (he beat the Giants and 49ers and lost to the Broncos) when Palmer was out with a shoulder injury and now, assuming Palmer is out for the season, takes over the 8-1 Cardinals. If the Jets didn’t trade for Tebow, who knows, Stanton would be their starting quarterback.

2. No team has played the Super Bowl on its home field. And even though Cardinals coach Bruce Arians says Palmer can get them to Glendale, Ariz., on Feb. 1, it’s a shame Palmer was injured. He was playing very well. He had 11 TDs, 3 INTs and a 95.6 QB rating. He did have good timing signing a three-year $50 million extension on Friday that includes $20 million guaranteed.

Arizona has been playing terrific defense, but I don’t think they will be able to generate enough offense without Palmer. But it would be quite a story if the Cardinals, who other than getting to the Super Bowl in 2009 have not have much success, are the first team to play the Super Bowl on their home field.

3. The Bears are really bad. How bad? Aaron Rodgers threw six touchdown passes against them in the first half of the Packers 55-14 victory on Sunday night. In the third quarter, Green Bay wide receiver Jarrett Boykin broke free and leaped to block a punt by Patrick O’Donnell. Boykin’s right foot made contact with the ball before O’Donnell could boot it. I’ve never seen the defensive team kick the ball before the punter.

4. Chicago has lost its last two games to the Patriots and Packers by a combined 106-37, giving up more than 50 points in each game. So much for the Monsters of the Midway. They’ve been outscored 80-7 in the first half of those games. The good news is they’ve won the second half 30-26 when it was already garbage time. The Bears have lost three in a row. In the first loss of the streak against the Dolphins, they were outscored 14-0 in the first half, making it 94-7 in the first half of the last three games.

5. Rodgers and Peyton Manning combined to throw 11 TDs on Sunday. The Jets have thrown 10 TD passes in their 2-8 season. Rodgers threw his six in the first and second quarters. Manning threw his five in the second and third quarters. Neither played in the fourth quarter.

6. I guess we saw how Manning responds when he says he stinks. He was tough on himself after the loss last week to the Patriots and then comes back and throws for 340 yards and five scores. He did throw two interceptions for the second week in a row.

7. How ‘Bout Them Lions? They are 7-2, have a four-game winning streak and lead the Packers by one game in the NFC North. They are the new Cardiac Kids. Consider their last three victories. They beat the Saints 24-23 on Matthew Stafford ‘s five-yard TD pass to Corey Fuller with 1:48 left. The next week in London, they trailed the Falcons 21-0 at the half, then won the game 22-21 on Matt Prater’s 48-yard field goal on the final play of the game. Prater had just missed wide right from 43 yards, but it was ruled no play because Detroit was called for delay of game, a penalty the Falcons could not decline. That moved the Lions back five yards and Prater nailed it. Then on Sunday, Stafford connected with Theo Riddick on an 11-yard TD pass with 29 seconds left to beat the Dolphins 20-16. Whew!

8. As long as Tony Romo is healthy, the Cowboys have a shot at the Super Bowl. But he sure did look uncomfortable with all the padding to protect those two broken bones in his back. One week after Brandon Weeden couldn’t complete a pass to Dez Bryant until the last couple of minutes against the Cardinals, he caught six passes for 158 yards and two scores from Romo against the Jags in London. That all came in the second quarter.

9. The Raiders, at 0-9, appear to have an insurmountable lead for the first pick in the 2015 draft. Who will Jon Gruden take?

10. The Browns are for real. They lead the AFC North at 6-3 after embarrassing the Bengals 24-3 in Cincy on Thursday night. But this division race is going right down to the final weekend of the season. The Bengals are 5-3-1 and the Ravens and Steelers are 6-4. Can somebody tell the Steelers the kickoff for their game against the Jets was at 1 p.m. Sunday. They must have thought it was next Sunday because they didn’t show up. Maybe they were at the movies with Geno Smith.

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