Fitzpatrick has not thrown a pass in an NFL regular season game since his rookie season of 2005 when he appeared in four games, including three starts, with St. Louis. He is the 26th player to start a game at quarterback for teh Bengals in their history. Jordan Palmer, Carson's younger brother, will be the No. 2 quarterback.
Carson Palmer had started the last 51 games for the Bengals. Jon Kitna started the final three games of the 2004 season when Palmer had strained knee ligaments.
Palmer attempted to warmup Sunday during pre-game but it was determined he would be unable to go.
Palmer was held out of the majority of practice on Friday but neither he nor head coach Marvin Lewis showed any concern. He was listed as questionable on the injury report.
"It was just a rest day," said Palmer after practice Friday afternoon. "I felt good with the game plan, confident with what we are doing and the doctors decided that the best thing to do would to be rested and fully healthy for Sunday. I'll be ready to roll on Sunday."
The Bengals and Browns are each seeking their first wins of the season after starting off 0-3. Cleveland is coming off a 28-10 loss at Baltimore, while the Bengals lost 26-23 in overtime on the road against the New York Giants.
Because Palmer was limited in his practice work Friday due to the injury the Bengals were required by NFL policy to place him on their official injury report. Just how the injury occurred, whether it was caused by one of the six sacks that Palmer suffered last week against the Giants, is unknown.
Palmer had participated fully in practice Wednesday and Thursday. Lewis has often commented about the quarterback's desire to take as many snaps in practice as possible.
"Friday (Palmer) takes less reps anyway, because Friday is a day we give Ryan more work," said Lewis. "That's the one thing we do. So, it wasn't a lot different, but a little. He does like to take a lot of reps. He didn't throw his normal part today, that he normally does.
"I think he feels comfortable with it. Watching the practice tape from (Thursday), I felt comfortable with it."