We've been speculating for quite some time now in this post-draft era about whether or not Carson Palmer will be traded once the lockout is lifted. In reality, most everything that we've said has been just that - speculation. Everybody from Kurt Warner to Josh Kirkendall to Geoff Hobson to Emperor Palepatine of the Galactic Empire have been weighing in on whether or not they think that Carson is going to be a Bengal come this time next year.
Warner thought that Palmer would be the best fit for the Arizona Cardinals. Josh speculated that Andy Dalton might be the first rookie QB to start for the Bengals since 1969. Hobson wrote a controversial piece suggesting that now that the Bengals have Dalton, they won't be motivated to trade Palmer until after this season. As for Emperor Palpatine - he has been quoted as saying, "Yes, let the hate flow through you," which I can only assume was directed at Carson towards the Bengals organization.
Experts on the subject of trades such as Drew Rosenhaus, who has represented numerous Bengals and is familiar with Mike Brown, believes that Carson will be traded.
Now, we are not prepared to say that this is confirmation that Palmer will definitively be gone next year - far from it. Rosenhuas didn't exactly specify when he thought such a trade might happen, and didn't say that he had any insider information.
Agent Drew Rosenhaus believes QB Carson Palmer will be traded for a first-round pick. He told WQAM Palmer and Philadelphia QB Kevin Kolb will warrant a top pick when the lockout lifts. That value could interest Mike Brown but likely will take adding a second pick for him to pull the trigger.
We also don't know what teams will be willing to give up to get Palmer. Some have speculated that anything more than a first rounder would be too steep for a QB whose skills have been declining due to recent injuries. Others, like Mike Brown, don't think that a first rounder will be enough. So even if there is interest, Mike Brown still probably won't deal Palmer unless it's for the right price.
However, it is nice to finally be hearing some confirmation from somebody who has dealt with Mike Brown in the past. And unless somebody who knows Mike Brown better steps forward (maybe somebody in his bowling league or perhaps in his 10 ways to kill kittens class?) and says that he's not moving Palmer, this report is the best we have.
But like the Return of the King, this might be an ending that drags on for a while.