The talk around the Arizona Cardinals with the start of OTAs has been the pressure that starting quarterback Carson Palmer is under this season. Can he win the big game? But pressure is nothing new to Palmer. In fact, according to Pro Football Focus, Palmer was one of the league's best when under pressure.
Clearly we are talking about two different types of pressure. The one everyone is talking about is the moment in big games. PFF is referring to pressure from defenders.
Take a look at this stat:
Most accurate QBs under pressure in 2015:— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) May 19, 2016
1. Sam Bradford, 74.6%
2. Carson Palmer, 72.2%
3. Russell Wilson, 71.6%
4. Philip Rivers, 71.0%
Palmer had the second highest completion percentage in the NFL. And we can separate some of the other quarterbacks out, based on offensive scheme. Sam Bradford and Phillip Rivers played in offenses where the short pass was big chunk of what they did. So when there was pressure, there was a dumpoff throw to be made.
Palmer and Wilson are different.
The Cardinals push the ball down the field. Palmer threw a ton of intermediate and deep passes. Wilson also makes plays down the field while under pressure.
Arizona hopes this continues, but ideally there will be less pressure.
They added Evan Mathis and drafted Evan Boehm. D.J. Humphries is expected to be ready to start.
Hopefully there is less pressure. But since you can't avoid it all season, it is good to know Palmer can handle it and make plays.