'Ready to Prove People Wrong’
ROBERT KLEMKO: Is Carson Palmer anything more than a stopgap for the next young QB?
STEVE KEIM: I think when you’re in a position to make decisions and acquire talent, you always have to weigh the pros and the cons. We felt like Carson Palmer was our best option, whether it was free agency or the draft. Now that Carson is here I’m willing to say I think he’s better than what people think. The guy still has tremendous touch and accuracy. I think he’s got a chip on his shoulder. He probably would like to have a few games back over the past few years and he’s ready to prove people wrong. He’s got a chance to do some good things.
Then you consider that we have skilled players in Larry Fitzgerald, and Andre Roberts in the slot. Michael Floyd has made huge strides and may be our most improved player. And then you throw in Patrick Peterson as a gadget guy. There are some weapons to play with and that excited Carson. That doesn’t mean we won’t look at a quarterback in the draft. The talent at that position is so scarce, we’ll always consider drafting one no matter who our QB is.
KLEMKO: What have you learned about Bruce Arians?
KEIM: I always heard he had an outstanding way to communicate with players. In my mind, some of the great coaches are able to hold guys accountable, push them to the limit, and at the same time, the players fall in love with the coach. And Bruce has that way about him. He has the ability to get out there, run these guys into the ground, be extremely hard on them, hold them accountable, and at the end of the day those guys love B.A. and they want to play for him. And I think if you have that kind of coach, it gives you a chance.
KLEMKO: What does Patrick Peterson mean to the Cardinals?
KEIM: I’ve never been a part of a team with a more valuable defensive player. Then you consider the guy can really help you in three phases of the game—defense, special teams and now as a receiver. He is one of a kind. Every player that you draft, there’s a maturation process. Sometimes guys have to grow up. When Patrick walked through the door he was ready to play. He was already a pro, from a skill-set standpoint and from an attitude and maturity standpoint. From an ability standpoint, I’ve never seen anything like him. He’s the closest thing in the league to a Bo Jackson, a Deion Sanders. I’ve seen him stand on the field flatfooted and throw the ball 65-70 yards. He goes out to practice as a wideout, and runs a 10- and 15-yard out as well as anyone on our team. His value to our team is really unparalleled.