Samuel tied for the NFL lead with 10 interceptions last year and added two more that he returned for touchdowns in the playoffs. The Patriots assigned the franchise tag to Samuel on Feb. 16 and at the time both parties appeared to be happy.
"We don't look at it as a bad thing," Samuel's agent Alonzo Shavers said shortly after his client received the franchise tag. "This is a step in the process in working toward a long-term deal."
However, after two months of negotiations, Samuel has changed his tune.
"This is to let everybody know that I'm not happy anymore and things are not going well," Samuel told the NFL Network's Adam Schefter. "At first I thought it was going well, but it's not."
Samuel is set to receive a one-year salary worth $7.79 million under the franchise tag. However, since he was franchised, Nate Clements signed an eight-year deal with the 49ers that includes $22 million in bonuses and guarantees, while Dre' Bly agreed to terms with the Broncos for a five-year deal worth $16 million in bonuses and guarantees.
Samuel and the Patriots have been working towards a long-term deal but after Clements and Bly's lucrative contracts, the Patriots are going to have to shell out a lot of money to keep Samuel in New England.
According to Samuel, right now he and the team don't see eye-to-eye on his monetary value.
"We have a difference of opinion in my value," he said. "They (Patriots) think I'm worth one price and other teams think I'm worth a lot more. If a long-term deal can't be done at fair numbers for me and New England, then I want to be traded."
Samuel did say in his interview with the NFL Network that he hopes a deal with the Patriots will still get done. However, if they're not willing to up their offer, he's ready to move on.
"I'm prepared to do what's best for my family," he said. "It's not what I want to do, but what I have to do. They're handling their business the way they feel they have to and I'm going to do the same."
Samuel can still negotiate with other teams but the Patriots have the right to match any offer he receivers. If Samuel signed an offer sheet with another team and New England decided not to match it, they would receive two first-round draft picks.
"The rest of the league knows I'm worth more than New England is offering but they're scared of that compensation (giving up two first-round selections)," Samuel said. "But I want to get this over with bad enough that I'm willing to work with any team to get a fair long-term deal done.
"I've been patient, haven't said anything bad and haven't said anything negative. But my patience has run out. Business is business. They handled their business their way and I'm handling my business my way. I hope not but it's looking more and more like it could be time to move on.
And for the Patriots, it's looking more and more like the Deion Branch fiasco all over again.