You would figure he would let it go by now; maybe concentrate on what’s ahead instead of what’s behind. It’s been five months and 12 days since the Eagles smoked the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship, 31-7, at Lincoln Financial Field. And, apparently, it is still a very irksome topic for some Niners.
Back in May, San Francisco wide receiver Deebo Samuel went public, maintaining the Niners would have won if starting quarterback Brock Purdy did not go down on the first series of the game, followed by backup quarterback Josh Johnson getting knocked out of the game with a concussion.
“We lost because we played with 10 people,” Samuel said in May. “All the trash talk coming from the Eagles fan base and the players, you just get tired of that.”
Samuel called the Eagles his “most hated team.”
On Monday, Samuel did not back off when talking to CBS Sports Radio’s Zach Gelb, who has Philadelphia ties. In what was scheduled to be a 15-minute interview quickly turned, when Gelb pressed Samuel on his Eagles’ hate. He feels if the Niners stay healthy, “the sky’s the limit.” He also added, “I mean, I said what I said.”
When asked about the Niners’ upcoming Week 13 national FOX TV game at the Linc was broached, Samuel hedged and then did a complete retreat, saying, “I don’t know. Just wait until Week 13, 12, whatever week it is, and we’ll show you.”
Then he hung up the telephone interview.
A woman’s voice came on the line saying, “Hey, guys, alright, we’re good to go.” That was it. That was the end of the interview.
Apparently, it wasn’t the end of Samuel’s angst over a loss that still haunts him.
For Samuel’s sake, hopefully it won’t be snowing in early December in Southeastern Pennsylvania on Dec. 3.
He may feel the wrath of Eagles’ fans in more ways than one.
Here’s the interview:
Joseph Santoliquito is an award-winning sportswriter based in the Philadelphia area who has written feature stories for SI.com, ESPN.com, NFL.com, MLB.com, Deadspin and The Philadelphia Daily News. In 2006, he was nominated for an Emmy Award for a special project piece for ESPN.com called “Love at First Beep.” He is most noted for his award-winning ESPN.com feature on high school wrestler A.J. Detwiler in February 2006, which appeared on SportsCenter. In 2015, he was elected president of the Boxing Writers Association of America.