Samuel was a great pick up for a great value at the time, and the Falcons' young cornerbacks, Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford, surely learned a lot from Samuel during their rookie season, but his age has started to impact Samuel's game and his ability to stay on the field. Cutting Samuel saves the Falcons a whopping $4.5 million. I loved having Samuel in Atlanta, but with the great potential of the Falcons' rookie corners, plus that cap savings, this is pretty clearly a sound decision by Atlanta.
As you can see, Samuel's release saved the Falcons quite a sizable amount of cap space. Samuel became expendable in Atlanta given his age, injury struggles, and the progression of the Falcons' young cornerbacks.
Eagles fans are more than familiar with the man who calls himself Mr. Pick Six. Samuel signed a massive 6 year, $56 million contract during the 2008 offseason. He was with the Eagles until the team traded him after the 2011 season. In his time as an Eagle, Samuel made a lot of big plays (23 interceptions) but also missed a lot of tackles. The Eagles traded him due to a mix of salary reasons and a declining relationship with the team's front office. Plus, the Eagles already had Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (yikes) and Nnamdi Asomugha (doubles yikes) on the roster. Due to their desperation to get rid of him, Samuel only netted the Eagles a 7th round pick from Atlanta. The Eagles used that pick on current backup running back Bryce Brown.
Samuel is a free agent who's available to sign with any team. The Eagles sure could use some depth at cornerback, but don't count on a Samuel return. I'm sure another NFL team will be willing to pay for Samuel's services.
I can't wait to touch all that thickness again— IG: Mr_picksix (@pick_six22) August 2, 2012