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Don't knock Oakland Raiders for Carson Palmer trade

You can knock the Oakland Raiders for just about every quarterback move they have made over the last decade. You can't knock them for failing to get much for Carson Palmer.

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It's a minor miracle they got anything in return for Palmer from the Arizona Cardinals.

The quarterback didn't want to play in Oakland. He wasn't amenable to taking a pay cut from the team because he would have preferred making even less money to go elsewhere. Once the Raiders knew Palmer wasn't on board, they had to get rid of him.

I assumed they simply would have to cut Palmer. His onerous contract and lackluster play on the Raiders did not make him an attractive trade candidate. New Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie moved up 43 picks from the seventh round to the sixth round, plus he picked up a conditional seventh-round pick in 2014. Fine.

Those picks probably won't make a difference for the Raiders, but McKenzie, smartly, is in slash-and-burn mode. He's making up for the significant mistakes of Raiders past.


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The ridiculous trade for Palmer in 2011 -- sending a first- and second-round pick -- is the type of move McKenzie never would make. (Cincinnati Bengals owner Mike Brown, meanwhile, retroactively should be given the 2011 Executive of the Year award.)

The Raiders didn't have to give up much for Matt Flynn. They are paying Flynn far less money than Palmer. This rebuilding process is going to take time, but McKenzie took the smartest route possible: He moved on.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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