Carson Palmer, who had started every game for the Raiders this season, was shut down for the season after breaking a rib in their loss against the Panthers. Going into Week 17, head coach gave backups Matt Leinart and Terrelle Pryor equal snaps with the first team offense in an attempt to find a starter for the season finale. According to the Raiders’ twitter account, Pryor won the job.
Palmer went down after only three pass attempts against Carolina, and Leinart came in to finish the game. Leinart was 16-32 on the day with an interception and a 11.8 quarterback rating.
Pryor came in and threw one pass against Carolina, which he completed. That was only his second pass on the season. He played a series in the Raiders win over the Chiefs in which he threw a pass into the grass.
Palmer, despite the Raiders record, had been having a relatively good season passing the football. He’s thrown for over 4,000 yards with 22 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. In six games this season, Palmer has thrown for at least 300 yards — which may be a testament to their propensity for playing from behind over anything else.
The Raiders gave up a 3rd round pick in the 2012 draft to draft Pryor in the 2011 Supplemental Draft. After being drafted, Pryor was forced to serve a five game suspension due to his involvement with the Ohio State scandal which several players received improper benefits. It was reported that Pryor drove up to eight different cars during his time at OSU.
Since serving his suspension, he has seen very little playing time. He saw game action once in 2011. He lined up as a wide receiver. He was put in motion and received a direct snap. The play was nullified due to a false start by Pryor. This season, Pryor wasn’t even suited up to play until the Kansas City game, and he has only thrown the two passes mentioned earlier.
The Raiders have been struggling to find a permanent quarterback since Rich Gannon left, and haven’t been successful doing so. At this point, it doesn’t seem as Pryor will be that guy either, but that still remains to be seen as he has not seen consistent playing time in his yearn and a half in the NFL.