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 Post subject: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 5:07 pm 
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FALCONS RELEASE SAMUEL, NICHOLAS
Posted 11 minutes ago

Jay Adams
atlantafalcons.com
Twitter Jay's Blog

The Falcons announced Wednesday that the team has parted ways with veteran cornerback Asante Samuel and linebacker Stephen Nicholas

The Atlanta Falcons today announced that they have released linebacker Stephen Nicholas and cornerback Asante Samuel.

Nicholas, 6-3, 236 pounds, played in 101 games with 51 starts in seven seasons with the Falcons. He logged 397 total tackles (284 solo) with 10 sacks, two interceptions, five forced fumbles, and 12 passes defensed. Nicholas was selected by the Falcons in the fourth round (109th overall) of the 2007 NFL Draft.

Samuel, 5-10, 185 pounds, spent two seasons with the Falcons and notched 70 tackles (62 solo) with six interceptions and 20 passes defensed. Samuel was originally selected by the New England Patriots in the fourth round (120th overall) of the 2003 NFL Draft.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 6:11 pm 
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:down:

Hopefully with the extra cash, the Falcons actually use to make improvements to the team unlike last year.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 8:05 pm 
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Would have really like one more year out of Asante just not a 5 million. Dont understand how you can not want to pay Samuel 5 mill for his play and pay Decoud 2.5 for what he is out there doing. I dont think anyone is against the Nicholas cut dude done doesnt really bring anything to the table at this point in his career.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 10:00 pm 
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Good move, we have no need for Samuel and Nicholas has always sucked.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 10:06 pm 
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If/when Robert Alford is getting burnt this year, I will remind you of this post.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 12:46 am 
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DaveWaz wrote:
Good move, we have no need for Samuel and Nicholas has always sucked.


This is on MF level of bad. C’mon Dave you are better than this.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 1:17 am 
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Who do they plan on replacing Samuel with? A bad move IMO. Nicholas is no big deal.


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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 1:50 am 
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Emmitt wrote:
DaveWaz wrote:
Good move, we have no need for Samuel and Nicholas has always sucked.


This is on MF level of bad. C’mon Dave you are better than this.



? Samuel's got benched this year, had only 1 pic, clearly lost a step, is 33 and was set to make $3.5 million. We put a second on Alford and he was decent as a rookie, we should expect with an offseason of coaching and NFL conditioning he should improve in his second year.

As far as Nicholas goes, he's been lousy for years, he's just too slow. Sure he tries hard, but if you can't cover, you can't cover and Nicholas has been getting torched for years, he's an enormous liability any time he's on the field.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 1:58 am 
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http://wp.advancednflstats.com/defenderstats.php?pos=CB

Oh and there's this, Samuel was the worst of the 4 corner-backs we started this year statistically, and was the 99th best corner in the league this year. :rofl:

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 10:33 am 
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DaveWaz wrote:
http://wp.advancednflstats.com/defenderstats.php?pos=CB

Oh and there's this, Samuel was the worst of the 4 corner-backs we started this year statistically, and was the 99th best corner in the league this year. :rofl:


Not sure how legit that site is. No way DeAngelo Hall was one of the top five corners this year. I can’t take those rankings seriously.

Samuel still provides a veteran presence, which is what the Falcons now need in their young secondary. I don’t hate the Falcons for dumping Samuel, but they better come up with a replacement for depth. McClain was pretty horrendous last year.

Nicholas wasn’t great, but the guy was a great run defender. I would have liked to see him in the Mike Peterson role of being the top backup. He was making too much money though.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 5:58 pm 
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Samuel had obviously lost a step this year. It would have been nice to keep him around, but not at the price tag he was at. That said, I wouldn't be surprised if Samuel goes to another team and has a much better year than he had last year.

In our system, Nicholas was a backup. Bartu ran circles around him. I hope that we continue to inject fresh young bodies into our LB core, but at this point, we seem to be somewhat set for starters. Perhaps we'll pick up another special team ace in the draft who can fill in at LB if necessary.


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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 8:03 pm 
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He didn't lose a step. He just wasn't very productive, partly due to the fact that the Falcons were playing from behind so much. He should rebound and have a good year.

Alford was decent, but with 2x the PT and playing time, he could easily struggle a la Dunta Robinson. Sloppy in his technique and still doesn't have great awareness, the potential is large that he struggles in 2014.

Having a veteran insurance policy makes sense. Who would have been better than Asante? Maybe Peanut Tillman, but that's about it.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 8:37 pm 
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$3.5 million is simply too much for a #4 corner back, and I don't see why he would bounce back as he's only another year older. Cutting him was pretty much common sense at this point.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Thu Feb 06, 2014 8:49 pm 
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He wouldn't be the #4 cornerback, he'd be the #3. In fact, he'd probably be the de facto #2 if given that opportunity.

And his cap hit ($5M) in 2014 is right in line with a lot of corners. If Asante is overpaid, then so are probably 25 of the 32 highest paid corners this year:
http://www.spotrac.com/rankings/nfl/cap ... /limit-50/

I was well aware that the Falcons would cut him, but just like Brent Grimes and John Abraham last year, you're losing a good player because they are in the vicinity of being too old, but aren't in fact too old.

The reason why Asante would bounce back is that things that he's good at: awareness, ball skills, anticipation, don't decline with age.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Fri Feb 07, 2014 9:35 am 
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It's hard to improve if you keep all the players that aren't getting it done.


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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Fri Feb 07, 2014 1:00 pm 
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It’s funny how some you guys think McClain and Bartu are positioned in a regular spot. Bartu running circles? What impact did he make this year? I’m willing to give him time to develop, but what did he prove last year to be a starter in 2014? McClain as a nickel corner? Did you see how many times he got toasted last season. You guys want improvement yet still want to rely on some of the guys who proved absolutely nothing last season.

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Fri Feb 07, 2014 7:34 pm 
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Bartu has played one year in this league. He had 85 tackles and 3.5 sacks. Nicholas, who played 7 years on this team, had one year where he had more than 85 tackles and one year with 3 sacks. Bartu was not light's out, but he had a pretty darn good rookie campaign, and certainly looked much better than Nicholas during his tenure here. And I say it again... He was a ROOKIE. Assuming he develops a little bit here and there, he will continue to make this move look like a no-brainer.

McClain is somewhat decent depth, but we obviously need to do something at CB. I assume that something will be to find a free agent that can be a #2 or a nickel corner, who doesn't have a 5 million dollar price tag.

The thing to keep in mind here is cap space. The Falcons now have a considerable amount of cap space to work with this year. I assume, based on us clearing so much cap space, that we will be addressing some of our needs in free agency.


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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2014 12:44 am 
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Comparing Grimes and Abe who were playing at a high level the last time they were on the field prior to being cut to Asante who was one of the worst CB's in the league this year is a pretty big stretch. Why would he be a number 2 this year when he was statistically outplayed by Mclain and Alford? Both of which are younger and make less money. :doh:

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 Post subject: Re: Falcons Release Samuel & Nicholas
PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2014 2:37 am 
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Asante wasn't one of the worst CBs in the league last year. Pro Football Focus had him like 57th out of 110 CBs, which is right in the middle of the pack. Again, it was Asante's worst season and he was still average by league standards. His coverage grade was -2.0, and Alford's was -3.1. His run stop grade was -0.2, while Alford's was -2.4.

Advanced NFL Stats metrics are based largely off how many positive plays a player has (and in regards to Win Probability when those plays occur), which Asante didn't have a lot of last year. But that doesn't mean he was bad. Like I said, he didn't have his normal level of production, but when you watch tape there's no reason to think that he won't be significantly better this year. Asante is a player that thrives on being in the right place at the right time, and in the case of 2013, he didn't find himself in those situations very often. If you're going to source some advanced metrics, try to understand the methodology first. :so:

And in one sense you might claim that sort of playing style is random and thus it's just as likely that Asante could have another bad year as he could have a good year. But then when you factor in that Asante has had a knack for being in position to make those plays for 10 years, there is every reason to believe that 2013 is an aberration, a statistical outlier in regards to the previous year. Again, because the things that Asante does well aren't things that go away with age. It's the same as what I said last year with why Grimes was likely to have several more good years left in him because he like other corners like Charles Woodson and Champ Bailey are technically sound and play smart football, which doesn't diminish with age as opposed to corners like Dunta Robinson or DeAngelo Hall who rested mostly on their superior athleticism throughout their careers, and that quickly subsides once they hit 30.

In the case of Asante, because of his playing style, he's not likely to be significantly worse at age 33 than he was at age 30.

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