Thankfully, I missed the live press conference today. Coincidentally, the wall in my house was saved from having my head thrown against it.
Once again, the Bengals brass underperformed in the public arena. At least in my mind.
Some people will be happy that Mike Brown gave Carson Palmer what seemed to be a subtle jab, saying (according to the Enquirer’s Joe Reedy)
“I’m not expecting him to be back. Carson signed a contract, he made a commitment. He gave us his word. We relied on his word and his commitment. We expected him to perform here. If he is going to walk away from his commitment we aren’t going to reward him for doing it.”
I, however, am annoyed by it. Yes, Brown also spoke highly of Palmer as a person and a player. But this comment will not help relations with No. 9 whatsoever. He could have said nothing. He could have simply said that the team is moving on. That the Bengals are left with no other option. But instead, he made it sound like commitments are of the utmost importance, even though owners break them all the time.
Remember Willie Anderson?
Good guy, long-time Bengal, solid performer on a bunch of bad teams.
Well, he was released after he refused to take a pay cut, missing out on some salary that was already promised him. There are dozens more just like him. Contracts and commitments are a two-way street and suggesting that player commitments are all-important when owners don’t always hold to them is hypocrisy.
I know some will say that Palmer quit on the Bengals, that he failed as a leader because he wanted out. Can you really blame him?
Let’s say you worked in a performance-oriented industry, gave your all for several years, sacrificed your prime and your body for a boss who consistently failed to employ common practices that could make you successful. Even if you were paid well, would you stay forever?
I doubt you would.
Yes, I am disappointed in Palmer, but I’m also disappointed in the Bengals, who have found yet another way to alienate one of their best players in the last 20 years. And this press conference certainly won’t help matters. Palmer will probably be even more upset. Other teams do everything they can to maintain good relationships with current and former players, often bringing them back to show the long lineage of success, past and present.
The Bengals just don’t seem to have that. They try to take shortcuts to success, but when things fall apart and players get angry, they seem puzzled about why it all went wrong.
Man, it’s frustrating.
Fortunately, actual football will be taking place soon and we can try to forget about the failures in the front office as we watch the players on the field.
Carson Palmer won’t be there. But it’s probably only a matter of time before someone else pops up with similar issues.
Hopefully, things will be handled a bit better with that guy.
Click the image to read Joe Reedy’s entire article