UPDATE: The Eagles discussed "significant" trade offers for their cornerbacks, but decided against dealing any, coach Andy Reid said in a statement issued by the Eagles press office Wednesday night. The statement, included below, attempts to tamp out a fire Asante Samuel started earlier this afternoon when he ripped the Eagles front office, saying they were playing "fantasy football" and didn't care about their opinion because they "probably never played football."
His comments -- and subsequent walk-back -- are below. Here is what Reid said:
"I am aware of how Asante felt and we have since talked. We both left with a positive feeling going forward. As I have said previously, when we acquired Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Nnamdi Asomugha we had received numerous calls on the availability of our cornerbacks. After discussing significant trade offers with other teams, we decided to keep all three cornerbacks on our team. Asante is a valuable member of our team and we appreciate all that he brings to this organization. As far as my relationship with Howie (Roseman) and Joe (Banner), I have a great deal of respect for both of them and I know we are all on the same page."
While Reid didn't specify that the trade offers were for Samuel, the Eagles said publicly this summer that they were listening to offers for him and multipile reports said he was discussed again at the trade deadline.
Suddenly, things are calm again between Asante Samuel and the Eagles. At least if you believe his latest comments more than his earlier ones. After torching the Eagles front office this afternoon, Samuel met with Andy Reid and returned to talk to reporters just before 6 p.m. Here's what he said:
"Me and coach talked and obviously I let my emotions get the best of me. Everything is good, I'm happy to be here, and everything is settled. He explained to me how the business works and I'm that much more educated on how the business works in the NFL and everything is good. Let’s get a win on Sunday."
That was his entire statement. Samuel did not take any questions.
Below are the comments that started this fire:
Earlier today Andy Reid said he had smoothed things over with cornerback Asante Samuel. That might be true for the coach and the cornerback, but Samuel had some choice words for Joe Banner and Howie Roseman after practice.
"Me and Andy (are) good. That’s all that matters," Samuel said. But he was asked if he feels wanted in Philadelphia.
"By Andy. A couple people upstairs might not want me, but who cares. They probably never played football," Samuel said. "It's a business, they run it like a business, so they're going to do what they need to do. So they're upstairs playing with a lot of money, playing a little fantasy football, so they’re doing their thing."
A reporter asked if the "fantasy football" comment referred to Banner and Roseman.
"Do they fit the comment I made?" Samuel asked. One reporter said they seemed to. "Then maybe so," he added.
Samuel, though, said his ire at the front office would not affect his play on the field.
"As long as I'm here, as long as I get paid each and every Tuesday, I'm going to go out and do my job to the best of my ability, each and every Sunday. I play for the fans and I play for my teammates, that’s what it’s all about."
He added, "everyone has other issues, contract issues, and I deal with them accordingly. That's how I always do."
Asked if he wants to play elsewhere, Samuel said, "I want to be where I’m wanted, wherever I’m wanted. I’m here right now, so I’m wanted."
How much longer he is here seems very much in doubt.