Carson Palmer 'just warming up'

November 11, 2011, 7:54 pm
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SAN DIEGO -- This is the quarterback for whom Hue Jackson surrendered a potential pair of first-round draft picks.Because with all due respect to the late Curt Hennig, Carson Palmer was the Raiders' Mr. Perfect in the third quarter of Oakland's 24-17 defeat of San Diego. At least, so said his passer rating.With pinpoint passing precision -- at one point, Palmer was 10 of 12 for 250 yards and two touchdowns -- Palmer showed Raiders fans why Jackson wanted him so badly (he finished 14 of 20 for 299 yards with an interception and a 125.0 rating)That he carved up the Chargers yet again, showed that he might have become the best QB in the AFC West after just two starts as a member of the Raiders.Consider: in four career starts against San Diego, Palmer has completed 88 of 123 attempts (71.6 percent) with 11 TDs and two interceptions.RELATED: Where does Carson Palmer rank?
And oh yeah, he gets the Chargers again in the season finale at the Coliseum in what could be for the division title.But perhaps most impressive, Palmer running a pseudo-no huddle offense without the benefit of the plays on his wrist."Long days and long nights," Palmer said, when asked to describe his short tenure with the Raiders since being acquired in a trade deadline deal with Cincinnati. "It's been information overload at times, just trying to get everything in and then whittle it down to an individual gameplan. It's taken me out of my normal routine."It's been tough to watch as much film as I normally do because I've been spending so much more time figuring out formations, protections, routes and where we're trying to get individual players and matchups. It's been a challenge, but it's been a great challenge and I've got a lot of work to do still."Palmer was cast into a potentially uncomfortable situation with his new teammates. Not because he was brought in, but how it went down and with all the accolades that accompanied him. Jackson called it the "greatest trade" in the NFL and offensive coordinator Al Saunders told a Kansas City radio station Palmer "is a real quarterback."Campbell seemed snubbed, even though all involved realized it was and always will be a business.Which is why Palmer, working the room from Day 1 has earned respect."When he first stepped into the building, he was talking to everybody, asking questions, just trying to get to know people, being a leader, being a quarterback," said running back Michael Bush. "That speaks volumes of him and each week he keeps doing the same things and just the small things go a long way with players. He is doing a good job at it."Of course, there are growing pains."Because he is new, sometimes he calls the wrong things every now and then," Bush added. "We tell him it's not right, but it's all around communicating and it starts at practice."He has put us in the wrong play situations, but that's O.K. He is new and we expected that."Who, though, could have expected Palmer executing the offense so well?"We haven't seen the best of him, in my opinion," said coach Hue Jackson. "He's just warming up."