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Carson Palmer reportedly hunting for title contender

Carson Palmer and his $13 million salary are no sure bet in Oakland, where the cost-cutting Raiders have little need for an aging veteran passer in the middle of a comprehensive rebuild.

The 33-year-old quarterback rejected a $3 million pay reduction this month and is willing to be released, according to multiple reports. And Michael Silver of Yahoo! Sports reported Thursday that Palmer's decision-making boils down to "a sense that Oakland's prospects for success in 2013 are so bleak that money is no longer the predominant factor in his thought process," according to three sources familiar with his mindset.

Silver was told that Palmer ultimately might prefer a backup role with a contending team over making more money as a starter with the Raiders.

"Carson isn't 28, and he doesn't know how much time he has left," a source close to Palmer told Silver on Wednesday. "Does he want to be with a team that is clearly rebuilding and looks like it's a long way away from contending, where he doesn't have a whole lot around him?

"He's gotten to play a lot in his career, but he hasn't gotten to experience a lot of winning. At this point, I think being somewhere where they have a chance to win is the most important thing."

If Palmer hits the open market, the Arizona Cardinals present a potential landing spot. Arizona is desperate for a veteran quarterback, but a team source told Silver that coach Bruce Arians and his staff haven't fully evaluated Palmer and are sure to eye the 2013 NFL Draft for passers.

From Palmer's perspective, moving from the Raiders to the woeful Cardinals doesn't address the central issue: After years in the wilderness, Carson wants to win.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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