Sunday, April 20, 2014
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Asante: "I want to be where I'm wanted"

UPDATE:

Asante: "I want to be where I'm wanted"

Asante Samuel said he does not know if the Eagles intend to trade him. (Michael Perez/AP)
Asante Samuel said he does not know if the Eagles intend to trade him. (Michael Perez/AP)

UPDATE:

BETHLEHEM, Pa. -- Asante Samuel said that he still does not know if the Eagles want him.

"I want to be where I'm wanted," Samuel said. "If I'm wanted here, if I'm not appreciated here life goes on. I move on."

Samuel was asked where he wanted to play after the Eagles went out and acquired two big-time cornerbacks in Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.

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"Wherever they want me," Samuel said. "If they're tired of my big-play-making ability maybe they'll ship me off or maybe they'll want to keep me. Who knows?"

Asked if he felt wanted by the Eagles, Samuel said he felt 50-50 about it. He was also asked if he approached the Eagles about trading him.

"No comment," Samuel said.

Eagles general manager Howie Roseman said that Samuel did not ask for a trade. Samuel's agent, Alonzo Shavers, said on Sunday that his client did not want to be traded.

Samuel said that he though the Eagles' cornerback threesome could work. He said that he would be willing to play nickel.

Samuel said that his absence from camp thus far was for a "personal matter." While  he was away the Eagles, of course, shocked the NFL and signed Asomugha as a free agent. Was he surprised?

"Free agency is free agency," Samuel said, "ain't no telling what can happen."

He said he had met both Asomugha and Rodgers-Cromartie before.

"Nnamdi's an awesome guy," Samuel said. "I met him at a Pro Bowl -- well-educated guy, well-spoken, great athlete. I got a lot of respect for him."

He said the cornerback trio was the best in the league "on paper, but until we play the game we'll see how it goes. It's a bunch of big-name players on the team. We're the 'Dream Team,' right? I guess we'll find out after the Super Bowl."

FROM EARLIER:

BETHLEHEM, Pa. -- Asante Samuel reported to Eagles training camp Monday morning, according to his agent Alonzo Shavers.

The Eagles later made it official.

"I'm happy to be here," Samuel told a few reporters as he walked into the indoor training facility at Lehigh University. "I love it here!"

Samuel practiced in the afternoon walkthrough. When he walked out onto the field he started shouting, "Asante's back!" He was the starting left cornerback during the walkthrough with Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie on the right side. Before Samuel showed up Rodgers-Cromartie played on the left side.

Samuel missed the first four days of camp for personal reasons. His absence was excused. Shavers said that his clients' matter had been resolved, although he could not provide details.

Samuel, of course, reports to camp with his name already the subject of trade rumors. Those rumors started approximately one second after the Eagles signed top free agent acquisition Nnamdi Asomugha. Samuel does not want to be traded, however, according to Shavers.

The Eagles have been fielding calls for the Pro Bowl corner, NFL sources said. But the team has said it has every intention of keeping all three -- the just-traded-for Rodgers-Cromartie is the third -- of their starting-caliber corners.

DeSean Jackson, meanwhile, is not in camp, despite a report that he could report as soon as Monday. The Eagles wide receiver is believed to be holding out because he wants a new contract. There have been conflicting reports of when he will arrive this week, if at all.

Eagles president Joe Banner said this morning of WIP-AM that he was under the impression that Jackson's return was not imminent, although he admitted that he would likely be the last to know.

Jeff McLane Inquirer Staff Writer
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