Eagles Trade Asante Samuel To Falcons For Seventh Round Pick
The Eagles traded four-time Pro Bowl cornerback Asante Samuel to the Falcons today for a seventh round pick, 229th overall. Samuel had two years and more than $21 million remaining on his contract, but restructured the deal with the Falcons to three years and $18.5 million according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
“We obviously feel good about our cornerback situation moving forward with Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie as our starters,” Eagles head coach Andy Reid said in a statement. “Those two played very well together in the latter part of the season and we anticipate that will continue as we head into the 2012 season.”
Samuel has 45 career interceptions, fourth among active players in the NFL. Samuel is the youngest player with more than 35 picks, but did not fit the Eagles new defensive scheme as well last year after the additions of Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.
Samuel’s strengths are reading the quarterback and jumping routes while playing off coverage, whereas the Eagles utilized more press coverage last season and struggled to find ways to get all three of their Pro Bowl caliber cornerbacks on the field in effective roles.
Now Samuel joins Falcons cornerbacks Brent Grimes and Dunta Robinson, who is likely to move to the slot to accommodate Samuel.
“We wish Asante Samuel all the best as he heads into the next chapter of his career in Atlanta,” Reid said. “He has been a very productive member of the Eagles for the past four years and we appreciate all that he has done for our organization.”
Samuel caused a stir in training camp last year after the Eagles acquired Rodgers-Cromartie and Asomugha, suggesting that perhaps his time in Philadelphia was short.
“If they tired of my big play making ability, you know, maybe they’ll ship me out,” said Samuel during training camp. “Maybe they want to keep me. I don’t know. Who knows?”
“I want to be where I’m wanted, if I’m wanted here,” Samuel said back in August and paused. “If I’m not appreciated here, then life goes on, I’ll move on.”
Things settled down and Samuel played out the season, but indicated late in the year that he’d be traded during the offseason.