Asante Samuel Trade Rumors: Terrell Thomas, Aqib Talib Developments Help out PHI
Nobody's basking in misfortune.
Nobody wanted Terrell Thomas' knee to go. Nobody wanted Aqib Talib to go criminal.
Thomas was the Giants' 2010 leading tackler (101 total, 80 solo) and No. 2 in forced fumbles (4) behind only a defensive end (Osi Umenyiora had 10). Simply: He's a cog. He'll be missed.
As will Prince Amukamara, Brian Witherspoon and Bruce Johnson, the three other corners already scratched from the Giants depth chart.
Plus, dude's also got feelings. Don't know him, but figure his reaction to last night's season-ending ACL tear mirrored that of Mike Brown's 2008 calf injury.
Brown wept. If Thomas did, nobody would blast him (or liken him to Chris Bosh).
Either way, you empathize.
Talib, on the other hand, was felled by his own conscious choices. Parked in the commissioner's office today for chilling behavior—he was arrested for aggravated assault from a March incident in Texas involving a gun—Talib lands in four- to six-game suspension territory, according to John Clayton.
That, you'd figure, plants Tampa Bay in the trade market.
Do you think recent league developments will lead to an Asante Samuel trade?
Both, you know, thumb Eagles fingers with delight. Why?
They defibrillate the market for Asante Samuel.
A few weeks ago, you thought it dead and DNR. The Eagles' ask of two second-round picks went without feelers. Not from the Panthers, according to both Michael Silver of Yahoo! and SI's Peter King. Not from the Bucs, seemingly satisfied with Talib and Ronde Barber. Not even from the Ravens, even after being picked to bone at cornerback—Fabian Washington (Saints) and Josh Wilson (Redskins) were plucked by free agency.
But now? You have to imagine one of them bidding.
Meanwhile, the Eagles say they're listening.
"Asante Samuel is on trade block," tweeted ESPN's Adam Schefter.
That's how this trade block banter goes. It's cyclical, surging with the start of the league year and the end of training camp. Teams stock their shelves with free agents early on. Then some guys get hurt. Others disappoint. Others still earn themselves a not-so-subtly suggested vacation.
All the same, these vacancies mean needs.
They won't mean shenanigans. If this becomes long and drawn like the Kevin Kolb-DRC swap, it won't be on account of a buyer. None of these teams will hardball like Cardinals after Kyle Orton-to-Miami fizzled.
Which player, paired with a pick, do you want most in exchange for Samuel?
This time, the only strong arm is hinged to a Philadelphian socket: Howie Roseman's.
I can live with that.
Roseman can. He'll work these teams, all sorely desperate for DBs.
Paraphrasing the theme of The Blind Side here, but four core positions emerged from the Michael Lewis best-seller: The quarterback (obviously), the left tackle (predictably), the right defensive end (correspondingly) and the right cornerback.(Not wide receivers; studies show they're actually a dime a double-dozen.) As NFL passing proliferates, D-coordinators counter with cornerbacks.
So teams might've balked at first. But they'll cave. They can't afford not to.
And Samuel looks too tempting.
Tempting enough to jack the Giants' cost, plus an inter-division premium.
Tempting enough to spark a Bucs and Ravens bidding war, Chinese auctioning Philly's way to fulfillment.
What that means?
Andy Reid gets what he wants: draft picks. At least the pair of No. 2s. Maybe more.
What he needs—linebackers, defensive tackles or safeties—will be in season too. And if he's shopping, and smart, here's how Reid should pick (in priority order):
From the Giants, Chris Canty and a No. 3, Marvin Austin and a No. 2, Michael Boley and a No. 2, or Kenny Phillips and a No. 4. Any spackles the cracks in Juan Castillo's cupboard.
From the Bucs, linebackers Mason Foster (No. 1 ILB from 2011 draft class) or Tyrone McKenzie, or safety Cody Grimm, all potentially paired with a No. 2. None are proven, but all potentially plug holes.
From the Ravens, defensive tackle Terrance Cody straight up, or linebacker Jameel McClain or Tom Zbikowski and a No. 5. Cody has Albert Haynesworth size and tenacity, the chasm between Jim Washburn in 2011 and his 2003 vintage. McClain broke out in 2010, and Zbikowski could break that cusp in Philly.
Those 10 deals look better than options in free agency. Than Lofa Tatupu. Than Kirk Morrison. Than Dahani Jones. None can quell concern.
What does? An answer. Upgrade. Stud.
The difference between Super Bowl contention and premature combustion.
The catalogue of options that just jolted into being.
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