One bonus I will give Palmer is he is a student of the game still. He watches and learns, he sees what other QB's are doing and trys to take the best from them, etc.
As for beating Manning, you are right. No one will. Bengals gave it the best shot in my opinion and if we would have stopped them a few times that game would have turned out very interesting. At least that was a lost that was very fun to watch and luckily with such a young team we have I will get to watch more of those games down the line.