With so much speculation swirling around the future of Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer, details are starting to emerge with three games remaining in a disappointing season.
It's highly unlikely Palmer would accept a pay cut this offseason to remain with the rebuilding Bengals (2-11). Palmer is projected to be one of the NFL's highest-paid players in 2011 with a base salary of $11.5 million, and this could be the first step to a potential parting between the two-time Pro Bowl quarterback and the team which drafted him No. 1 overall in 2003.
Cincinnati has yet to discuss its offseason plans with Palmer. But with the pay-cut option now squashed, this puts the Bengals in a tight spot. Cincinnati - one of the NFL's most frugal franchises - has to decide whether to overpay for a struggling quarterback or release Palmer, who will be 31 on Dec. 27, and make him a free agent for the first time in his career.
With no salary cap in place, the Bengals can cut Palmer without absorbing any charges.
If you still have Palmer in a keeper league, it's probably time to release him.