Ranking every relevant Bengals QB since 1990

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Cincinnati Bengals v Pittsburgh Steelers
Cincinnati Bengals v Pittsburgh Steelers / George Gojkovich/GettyImages
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3. Carson Palmer

With the first overall pick in the 2003 NFL Draft, the Cincinnati Bengals gladly took Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Carson Palmer. After spending his rookie year on the bench and learning from Jon Kitna, Palmer took the keys to the car in 2004.

The 2005 season was a special one for Palmer and the Bengals, as he led them to a winning record for the first time since the 1990 season. The former USC gunslinger threw for over 3,800 yards and 32 touchdowns to just 12 interceptions that year while Cincinnati won 11 games.

Unfortunately, Palmer was injured after his first pass of the game and missed the rest of the matchup. He returned for the 2006 season and threw for over 4,000 yards the next two years. Unfortunately, the production didn't translate to wins as the Bengals failed to secure a winning record in 2006 and 2007.

After the 2010 season wrapped up, Palmer demanded a trade and was eventually sent to the Raiders. He finished his Bengals career with 22,694 yards, 154 touchdowns, and 100 interceptions. Bengals fans aren't entirely fond of Palmer due to how things ended and some anti-Bengals comments he's made in recent years but it's hard to deny that he was one of their best quarterbacks.

Palmer gets the edge over Dalton here because if the Bengals needed a game-winning drive, Palmer is probably more likely to get the job done.