"It's my future," he said. "I'm not going to dwell on it or whatever. But I just know the Eagles' main focus is to win a Super Bowl, and I think I'm an important part of that. So we'll just see how it goes."
Samuel may not be as integral apart of the Eagles' future as he thinks. The team has had trade discussion to move the former All Pro defender.
Among the teams reportedly discussing trading for Samuel are the Denver Broncos and the Tennessee Titans. Both Denver and Tennessee have a need for defensive back help, yet neither can be seriously interested in acquiring a 31 year old veteran with an $8 million cap number. Both have reportedly bowed out of trade discussions with the Eagles … at the moment.
Samuel is due to earn roughly $20 million in his next two seasons. His base salaries are $9.9 million in 2012 and $11.4 million in 2013 according to NFLPA documents.
The numbers are prohibitively high for the Eagles who feel that his production hardly merits such a pay day. With Nnamdi Asomugha on the books for $26 million the next two seasons ($11 M in 2012, $15M in 2013), the Eagles call ill afford Samuel even if they wanted to keep him.
That perspective is a drastic turn from when Eagles coach Andy Reid once referred to Samuel as the best cornerback in the league, while handing him a six-year $57 million contract the first day of free agency in 2008. It's a bit ironic that the reason why Samuel left New England – for a big pay day – is the same reason that has him headed out of Philadelphia.
|Samuel recorded 22 interceptions in five years for the Patriots.|
"I ain't never said it, but Belichick, I just felt like he had a thing for me," Samuel said according to the paper. "He had something against me. I have no idea why. He was going to start Troy Brown, a receiver, at nickel [corner] and I'm over here sitting healthy and he don't want to even play me."
Samuel played well for New England, but the team has moved on from paying big dollars to an aging veteran. The team made it to the Super Bowl with a group of cast offs (Antwaun Molden, Sterling Moore, Nate Jones) , and converted receivers (Julian Edelman and Matt Slater) playing in the secondary.
Originally selected in the fourth round of the 2003 NFL Draft by the Patriots, Samuel built his reputation as a ball hawk by recording 22 interceptions in five seasons in New England. In four years with the Eagles he added 23 more.
Wherever Samuel lands he's going to need to take a pay cut. Despite his insistence that he joined the Eagles to "win a Super Bowl," perhaps it really was all about the money for the former UCF Golden Knight.
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Material from The Sports Xchange was used in this report.