Is Carson Palmer the best quarterback in team history? The question was posed by Study of Sports, introducing with, "Many would argue that Carson Palmer is the best quarterback that the Bengals have had in their franchises history." In truth, we're not really aware of many that think so, leaving the debate between Ken Anderson and Boomer Esiason. Both have Super Bowl appearances. Both have winning records as the Bengals starting quarterback (Anderson is 91-81, Esiason is 62-61).
While Carson Palmer is 32-29, he has no Super Bowl appearances and his lone playoff ended after the second play of the Wild Card game against Pittsburgh. Not that it is his fault; it's not. Still, Paul Brown, the revered father of the Cincinnati Bengals franchise, once said that "the test of a quarterback is where his team finishes." He said that in reflection of Otto Graham, calling him the best of all time. However, that quote has just as much truthful meaning today as ever.
Palmer, on the other hand, is on pace to break several all-time records, provided he stays healthy.
We'll pretend Palmer's first season didn't happen -- he sat behind Jon Kitna. Even so, Palmer is on pace to surpass Esiason with the complicated mathematical formula of multiplying Palmer's stats, by two. In that respect, Palmer is on pace for 214 touchdowns and 31,260 yards passing. If that pace holds true, then Palmer, if he plays another 10 seasons, will shatter Anderson's numbers.
In the end, stats have very little meaning in the grand scheme of things. Palmer must stock pile wins now, or else he won't surpass either Boomer or Anderson. We're not saying that Palmer is not going to be the greatest quarterback in franchise history. Neither did that initial piece reference at the opening. However, he still has a ways to go before surpassing Kenny Anderson and Boomer Esiason.