Atlanta Falcons Trying to Upgrade Defense with Possible Trade for Asante Samuel

Aaron NaglerNFL National Lead WriterApril 24, 2012

PHILADELPHIA, PA - AUGUST 11:  Asante Samuel #22 of the Philadelphia Eagles in action against the Baltimore Ravens during their pre season game on August 11, 2011 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Last year, the Atlanta Falcons gave five draft picks to the Cleveland Browns in order to move up to the sixth overall spot in the 2011 draft in order to draft wide receiver Julio Jones.

I wasn't a big fan of this trade at the time due to the fact that I thought giving up so much draft ammunition for a receiver, no matter how talented, would end up costing the Falcons on the offensive line and especially in the secondary, both spots where the team needed to start stockpiling talent. 

Well, it looks like I was wrong about the O-line. But I think the lack of talent in the secondary, and the lack of young talent in particular, is the driving force behind today's news, via FOX's Jay Glazer, that the Falcons are talking to the Philadelphia Eagles about acquiring Eagles cornerback Asante Samuel

Samuel is an excellent corner, without question. But having to trade for an aging corner who doesn't enjoy the physical aspects of the game of football seems a bit desperate to me. 

One thing working in the Falcons' favor is that the Eagles seem close to desperate themselves, as they are reportedly willing to take a fifth- or sixth-round pick to get Samuel off their books. 

That's another thing, trading for Samuel will cost the Falcons a bunch of money, as he is slated to make $9.9 million this year and $11.5 million in 2012. That's a good chunk of change to pay a guy who is closer to the end of his career than even the middle of it. 

In the end, I think Samuel would be a good addition to new coordinator Mike Nolan's defense. But the Falcons have been driven to this point, in part, because of their trade for Jones.