We might never really know what really goes on in Mike Brown's brain at any given time. I can only assume that when he looks at people, all he sees are dollar signs with legs and arms that stick out (in fairness to Brown, when I look at people I usually see sandwiches with olives on toothpicks for eyeballs). So when Mike Brown looks at Carson Palmer, he sees money. Who has sold the most jersey's in Cincinnati? I know for a fact that it's not Andrew Whitworth, or Bobbie Williams, or Clint Stitser for that matter. The guy who has sold more jerseys that any other player in Cincinnati is Carson Palmer.
So when Carson Palmer said he was walking right out of town this offseason, all Brown saw was all those dollar bills floating out of Paul Brown Stadium. And if he was going to let that happen, he needed a guarantee that somebody was going to bring more dollars back in.
It's not surprising then that Chris Mortenson of ESPN.com is reporting that Mike Brown would be willing to soften his stance on Palmer for the right price (something we've assumed for a long time). Mortenson writes,
The key to the whole thing is for Mike Brown to see little dollar signs begin to walk back into the building. If the Bengals draft a QB in round two, he's bound to see all sorts of little pinstriped "$" people walking through his doors - not enough to offset losing Palmer, but if a team like the Dolphins came in and sweetened the pot with more draft picks, then we might be in a position where we'd see Palmer shipped off for 2012 draft picks.
Bengals owner and president Mike Brown has said he will not trade Palmer, but sources say he may consider it if the team secures a quarterback and gets a favorable trade offer. Several teams such as the Raiders, 49ers, Seahawks, Cardinals and Dolphins are among those that could be interested in the veteran, who was the No. 1 pick in the 2003 draft.
Of course, a lot would have to happen to pull off a trade like this. First, the trade partner would have to meet Mike Brown's perceived value of Palmer, and none of us really know what that would be (likely at least a first round pick). Second, pigs would have to start flying and dogs would have to start running around yelling things like "Squirrel!!!"
Given those two factors, we might see Palmer in a different uniform next year.