Report: Cardinals unsure of Carson Palmer, Larry Fitzgerald will return

Vincent Frank
Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald and quarterback Carson Palmer

The Arizona Cardinals could be a vastly different team in 2017. Fresh off a disappointing campaign that saw them win just seven games, there’s been a lot of talk about what the future might bring for both Carson Palmer and Larry Fitzgerald.

Both Palmer and Fitzgerald signed extensions on the same day prior to the 2016 season. This has them both signed through next year. Though, the Cardinals themselves are unsure if either player will return.

“Both (Palmer and Fitzgerald) are contemplating walking away and have been for some time,” NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport reported on Sunday. “Neither has told the team if he plans to return, though both Palmer and Fitzgerald have had frequent conversations with coaches and team decision-makers about it, sources said.”

That’s some rather huge news right there. It’s also something we should pay close attention to in the coming weeks.

Palmer suffered through multiple injuries this past season, a concussion included. He’s 37 years old and has a long track record of injuries. Meanwhile, there’s been buzz about Fitzgerald stepping away from the game for some time now.

The future Hall of Fame receiver has in the past indicated that he wouldn’t play anywhere outside of Arizona. It’s also been noted that he is unsure about a return to the gridiron in 2017 (more on that here).

The interesting dynamic here is that the two could be tied at the hip. According to MMQB’s Albert Breer, the general feeling out there is that Palmer retiring would mean that Fitzgerald would call it quits too. The same can’t be said if Fitzgerald himself were to retire.

Arizona entered this past regular season as the favorites to hoist the NFC Championship trophy. Unfortunately, things fell apart for the team relatively quickly. If the Cardinals were to find themselves without both Palmer and Fitzgerald, it would be a major blow to their aspirations of returning to relevance.