The Philadelphia Eagles star-cornerback Asante Samuel is willing to shave $2.5 million off of his current 2012 salary of $9.9 million to assist the Eagles in either trading or retaining him. Samuel, who is 31, is a four-time Pro Bowl nominee and two-time Super Bowl Champion, and has been a member of the Eagles since 2008.
Originally drafted by the Patriots in 2003, Samuel developed to one of the elite cornerbacks in the NFL throughout his career. However, with last seasons acquisition of Nnamdi Asomugha, Philadelphia’s front office was faced with a difficult question — should the utilize Asomugha’s strengths and run with press coverage, or go with Asante’s strengths and utilize more of a zone defense?
Asante Samuel is known to roam free on the field which tends to leave a cushion between his opponent from time to time. The Eagles have benefited from this style of play, but they’ve also been victimized by it. it helped the Eagles make big plays, but also created some holes in their defense, and that was one of the bigger problems last season. The Eagles already tried to trade Samuel last season, and now committed to the man coverage – that’s what they paid for when signing Asomugha. Other NFL teams already looked into a trade, but are unwilling to pay the high price that comes with trading Samuel. Shaving off $2.5 million off his earnings next year, Philadelphia Daily News reported saturday, would help the Eagles trade him – Samuel seems to be ready for a trade himself.
We can’t yet project where Samuel will end up for the next season, but he’s not needed on the Eagles roster with a Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie ready to play. The Eagles also have one of the best nickel cornerbacks in the league in Joselio Hanson. So trading Asante only makes sense — it would allow him a better opportunity to remain a starter since it looks as though the Eagles defense is moving towards a more unified press coverage. Not to mention it would also be freeing up some much needed cap space!
Stay tuned Philly faithful as the Samuel Saga continues!