Thursday, March 29, 2012

To Asante, or not to Asante?

Philidelphia Eagles' starting corner back Asante Samuels is on the trade block right now and has said he is willing to restructure his contract in order to work out a trade. Rumors have emerged that the Titans are the favorites to land Samuel's services, though those rumors have been disputed and his contract is sure to remain a stumbling block in that process.

It came out late in the 2011 season that the Lions were all set to acquire Samuel from the Eagles prior to the start of the season until the Eagles changed their asking price. The Lions are certainly not going to give up a third round pick for a 31 year old player set to make over 20 million dollars the next two seasons. Mayhew and company are set on building this team through the draft and are in excellent position to take a corner in an early round this year. Not to mention the fact that Detroit recently signed former Colt Jacob Lacey to a one year contract. Lacey struggled through the first part of the year but came on strong in his final six games grading very well (+8.9) according to ProFootballFocus.com.

The Lions could wait it out as the Eagles will most likely release Samuel if they can't find a trade partner. At that point Samuel could go wherever he wanted, but it's unlikely the Lions would land him even then as they don't have the cap space to win a bidding war for his services.

Samuel would be an asset to the Lions' secondary as he was the 12th best corner in the league according to PFF, but there's another player who I think the Lions would be far better off going after though: William Middleton. Middleton graded out as the 7th best corner in the league with a grade of +10.0 on 400 snaps and is now buried on the depth chart in Jacksonville. His season was cut short by injury, but should be close to 100% by now. He was tendered at his original level of a 5th round pick and is only 25 years old.

I have to imagine that Mayhew is staying on to top of the Samuel situation, is aware of Middleton, and will make the best decision regarding Detroit's secondary. That being said, I highly doubt we'll see Samuel in Honolulu Blue.

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