Saying No To Nnamdi

Posted: June 7th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | Tags: | 21 Comments »

I need to put something longer and better researched together on CB Nnamdi Asomugha, but with Clark Judge posting some strange info I need to get this out there ASAP.

Judge, who writes for CBS Sportsline, put up a blog post that Asomugha isn’t all that high on the Birds wish list.  I agree with him.  Judge then talks about why.  First, Asomugha will cost a fortune.  I agree with this point.  The Eagles have one pricey, big time CB already in place.  Do you hand out a mega-deal to another CB?

Judge then says this:

“…partly because he’s a press cornerback who plays only the right-cornerback position. I know, I know, the Eagles need another cornerback like L.A. needs Sig-Alerts, and they could especially use one at the right-cornerback spot.”

Can’t say that I’m buying this angle.  Judge said he heard this from a source.  Just doesn’t make sense.  The Eagles need a RCB.  The Eagles want a RCB that can press.  Those are the reasons you would go after Nnamdi.  He’s a great fit.  Either Judge misunderstood what was told to him or he needs new sources.

Judge later brings up age as an issue.  Asomugha will turn 30 next month.  That is a big reason the Eagles are hesitant to want to offer him $15M a year or whatever ridiculous number he’ll get.  In the NFL you pay for the future, not the past.  Will Nnamdi be a dominant CB in 2012?  2013?  At some point he’ll start to decline.

Judge makes the comment that being 30 “puts him in the prime of his career”.  Huh?   Maybe Judge is being cute with his words.  Nnamdi might technically still be in the prime of his career, but he’s speeding toward the downside.  CB is not a spot where guys stay at an elite level forever.  Ronde Barber has played a long time, but is in the Tampa 2.  Charles Woodson isn’t really a CB anymore.  He’s a CB/SS/LB combo.  Nnamdi is entering his 9th season.  For Judge’s comment to really make sense, Asomugha would need be have several years left in his prime.  That’s when age wouldn’t be a factor.  Age is absolutely a factor when talking about a 30-year old CB.  Samuel is 30 himself and we’ve got to figure out who will replace him, whether that is 2012, 2013, or beyond.

Namdi is still a very good CB.  I’m not arguing that point.  He’s #2 to only Darrelle Revis.  The question is when that level of play starts to go away.  Might be 2011.  Or 2012.  Or he could be a freak that will stay elite for a couple more years.  You’re making a very expensive gamble if you give him a huge contract.

I think some desperate teams will make that gamble.  I still see the Houston Texans as a major suitor.  I think the Cowboys could be right there.  I wonder if Baltimore could quietly come out of nowhere to make a run at him.  And Detroit would make some sense as well.  None of these teams has an established star CB.  We do.

I think Judge is hearing correctly when he says don’t expect the Eagles to make a strong push for Asomugha.  I think his comments about Namdi “just being a RCB that likes to press” are way off or misunderstood.  I’d like to know who he heard that from and the context of the comments.  Maybe there is some angle I’m missing.

I would love to have Asomugha play for us.  In a fantasy world he’d announce that he wants to play for a winner and for a team that has a good CB already in place.  He’d take a slightly lesser deal to come here so he could compete for a championship, even if the deal was only for one season.  Like I said, “in a fantasy world”, meaning not real likely.  Bottom line, don’t expect to see Asomugha in midnight green this year.

21 Comments on “Saying No To Nnamdi”

  1. 1 slandog said at 4:11 PM on June 7th, 2011:

    I agree 100% Tommy. Over at BGN I’m arguing that same point. I’d love to have NA, but will he bring the same level of play for the next 3 or 4 season? He will decline eventually and giving him that kind of money is a huge gamble.

    I’d much rather go for a DRC, Grimes or Joseph. Younger, cheaper and will be a good CB for years to come and they all are in their prime unlike NA who is at the tail end of his prime.

    Good write up!

  2. 2 Healthy Scratch said at 4:52 PM on June 7th, 2011:

    I dunno. My thing is, they gotta get somebody, and Nnamdi’s the best there is. If they don’t grab him, then you go after James Joseph and hope his off year was a result of injury/atmosphere in Cincy. Or maybe Josh Wilson–tho despite his high rankings on some stat sites, you wonder why the Ravens are willing to part with him over Ladarius Webb…

    Being a 30 year old FA certainly didn’t affect Julius Peppers’ impact on a Bears D. Will he perform at that high a level for the length of his entire contract? Is it an apples to oranges comparison, being that corners rely on the “fresh legs” youth bestows them, whereas Dlinemen rely on power and technique? Fair questions.

    This team is pretty much perfectly arranged to bring in Nnamdi. They have a roster full of young (cheap) players that fill roles on defense, but not enough marquee talent.

    Also, they should go after Jared Gaither.

  3. 3 Tommy Lawlor said at 5:00 PM on June 7th, 2011:

    Peppers is awkward comparison. Freakish athlete. One of the greatest athletes to ever play in the NFL.

    Also, when his speed does go, he can adjust and be more of a power rusher. Reggie White did this later in his career.

    RE: J Gaither

    For what? He played mostly LT in Baltimore, right? You want him to come here and be the RT and beat out Justice? Possible, but not likely. Plus, Gaither has some character issues. He’d be worth it if I thought he was definitely the answer. I don’t see that being the case.

  4. 4 mcud said at 6:06 PM on June 7th, 2011:

    The only factor against signing Nnamdi is the money vs. age.

    From my chair, the list of pros is substantially bigger. Substantially.

    I’ve been looking for Sam’s post on Igglesblog that once talked me out of thinking it was a good idea, but I cannot find it, so I’m completely back on board the “Sign Aso ASAP” bandwagon.

    The cap has never been the problem with the Eagles.

  5. 5 MidniteMud said at 7:13 PM on June 7th, 2011:

    Same here mcud… I just see possibly the worst position on the Eagles (RCB) becoming one of the best on the team this year (not to mention probably the best CB tandum in the league). It IS all about winning the SB, and it is someting that obviously they have never accomplished. Why not go for NA??? I know the Eagles of the past always were careful about not “mortaging the future” of the team by signing overpriced players (cough… Redskins), but I believe they have done such a good job of it over the past few years that now they have one of the best cap situations in the NFL. They have an extremely young team (especially the D), and have the money to give toward resigning veterens now (Djax, Vick). Even though Djax and Vick will cost $$$, they still have more than enough to give to a high $$$ FA. We all know Howie wanted Peppers last offseason, and rightfully so. He is top 3 at his position in the NFL (depending on your bias), and NA is top three at his (same). It seems like the re-emergence of Vick has not only been special for him but the organization as well. This window will only be open for a few (3 maybe 4) more years with Vick. They know it. Put the best team you CAN on the field, and go for it! They have the youngsters on the team that will develop and hopefully continue their careers here for many years to come. However, isn’t it about time to stop looking/worrying about the age and money over the next couple years, and look at a SB WIN this year (if there is one)?

  6. 6 piercit said at 11:51 PM on June 7th, 2011:

    This reminds me of the TO situation. We knew we had superbowl potential. We have a short three year window again. If TO didn’t blow-up we would’ve had that superbowl. None of us are getting any younger. Cmon Eagles go for the big brass ring NOW. Sign NA!!

  7. 7 ATG said at 1:00 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    I keep thinking back to an article by Football Outsiders. In their comparison of CBs, Asante and Nnamdi were the only two season-long starters not to receive the minimum number of targets for their formula. QBs are afraid to throw at either of them. What happens if you put them on the field together? What happens when you add to them Hanson, whom FO rated better in the slot than any of us would have expected? I want to find out.

    Plus, he can be the karmic counterpoint to signing Haynesworth.

  8. 8 t said at 2:39 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    Grinch. 😀

  9. 9 EdinburghEagle said at 4:27 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    I think I change my mind on Namdi daily.

    For the fist time in years we have maybe a 3 year window at QB with no obvious replacement lined up, so at least some increased emphasis on short term goals makes sense. We have cash available. Like ATG says, our CB combination would be freakish and really narrow down QB’s options. I’d expect more speculative passes than last year to come Asante’s direction, and that is a Very Good Thing. To top it off, our safeties and linebacking corps are young and full of question marks and will go into next season with a new d-line scheme in front of them. Signing Namdi should make their jobs easier too.

    And yet… I’m not sold. Right now we need a starting RCB and a replacement for Samuel down the line. Sign Namdi and we solve RCB, but then need to find 2 new CBs for the future. It’s too early to fully judge Lindley, but early signs are that he’s no superstar. Marsh is a project: might be great, might bust completely. We might find ourselves in a year or two with a couple of rapidly declining and very expensive bookends just as we’re reaching last chance saloon with Vick. Not good.

    So yeah, I dunno. That said, I expect the Eagles to steer well clear given their track record at the position. Be interesting to see who they come up with.

  10. 10 Zack said at 8:32 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    If the Eagles aren’t interested in Asomugha they aren’t trying to win it this year, in my mind it’s that simple. We had huge issues in the secondary last year, the type of issues, a player like Asomugha would go a long way to correcting.

    I know Tommy’s been hinting for a while that the Eagles aren’t going to make a run, so I guess I’ve kind of settled on the fact he won’t be here – but lets not kid ourselves – this would be another case of the Eagles saying what we have is good enough to win it all….when clearly it’s not.

  11. 11 Eric said at 8:46 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    I thought it was all misinformation to begin with when he said the Eagles are not interested because he only plays RCB. hello!! The Eagles signed Asante and he only plays LCB here, minus some goal line stuff.

  12. 12 Zack said at 8:46 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    By the way – looking at our secondary as is right now? It’s scary

    RCB – Hanson/Lindley (or plenty of other names I wouldn’t want to see line up wide)
    SS – Jarrett/Coleman
    FS – Allen
    LCB – Samuel

    Can anyone tell me this isn’t a pretty awful sounding group?

    Hanson doesn’t have the speed to play outside consistently. Lindley is a 2nd year player with a few games of experience, and will have missed his mini camps and maybe training camp due to the lockout.

    A rookie or a second year player – both of whom will have limited practice due to the lockout

    A second year player coming off a nasty injury

    All this in what is now a pass first league – almost universally, makes me scratch my head as to why they wouldn’t be gung-ho for Asomuga. The drop off from Asomuga to the other corners is huge in my mind.

    Also leaves me wondering why re-signing Mikell isn’t a high priority. We better have 70 sacks this year if they don’t add a very, very good player or two.

  13. 13 Davesbeard said at 9:48 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    Sounds to me like Judge has missed some sarcasm.

    Judge: So ‘source’ are the Eagles interested in Nnamdi Asomugha?

    Source: No not at /all/, the eagles would /never/ be interested in a shutdown corner who likes to press at a position of major need.

    I understand the age/money arguments totally, his other reasoning just sounds completely misinterpreted as you say.

  14. 14 mcud said at 10:00 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    The Eagles have done this to themselves. They had options. Now, they have much fewer. And as for Marsh and Lindley, I’m perfectly fine with both of them learning on the sideline for a couple more years. Think about the fact that they would be looking at the best ballhawking CB in the league AND the best technique CB every day. It can only help their development.

    There are a ton of vets out there that could help us in 2011 and 2012 (Moss, Burress, Haynesworth, Bush, Kiwanuka, etc.), and none of them are without warts, be it age, fit, or personality. Nnamdi is the best fit of all of them, has the best track record of all of them, and happens to be the best player of all of them. That he is going to be the most expensive of all of them just goes with the territory.

    I for one, would feel a lot more comfortable about our new defensive coordinator going forward if we give him all the talent we can. Andy’s got what, 3-4 more seasons in him?

    Time to go all in.

  15. 15 The Reddgie said at 10:41 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    Tommy, is there any way you could put an article together that addresses the salary cap, expected extensions for Vick and DeSean and what a NA contract would look like (and conversely, what we could do if we go with a cheaper RCB option)?

    I know, I ask for a lot.

    I believe that i have read somewhere by someone that we have enough space to get all 3 signed, but I don’t have absolute certitude (/weiner’d) on that.

    Thanks, have a great day. The Reddgie

  16. 16 Surge said at 11:04 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    Getting Nnamdi Asomugha would give us a great CB duo similar to when we had Troy & Bobby or even Lito & Sheldon, except better. Having Nnamdi & Asante together with Joselio (if he truly is as good as some are saying) will give us a great nickel CB situation like when we had Troy, Bobby, and Al Harris or Lito, Sheldon, and Rod Hood. Im sure most of us enjoyed those groups. Nnamdi & Asante would definitely be the most expensive $$$ of the CB duos we’ve had, but they would also be the best CB duo we’ve had. I definitely think Roseman will push to get Nnamdi in Eagles green, but in the end it will be Nnamdi’s choice. So I’m not going to expect us to get Asomugha, but if we do we could have something special in the secondary.

  17. 17 JimmyK said at 11:39 AM on June 8th, 2011:

    I’ve always viewed Nnamdi as a player that was more of a perfect technique guy than a great athlete. I think he’ll age a lot better in the NFL than corners that rely on great speed and athleticism.

  18. 18 Healthy Scratch said at 4:48 PM on June 8th, 2011:


    Not to turn this into a Jared Gaither conversation, but I really don’t think you can overstate the impact of pulling Justice in the most important game of the year against GB. From my untrained eye, he looked pretty bad since the preseason. I kept waiting for the light to go on, and for him to return to his slightly-above-mediocre form of 2009, but it never happened. Sure, Vick can make protection look bad, but Justice got abused against above average competition and had serious issues with dumb penalties. Maybe the cleanout to his knee and some stability from the guy playing to his left will help him, but Gaither is an immediate upgrade.

    Gaither is elite, young, and would be playing the blindside as a RT here. We’d have arguably one of the best tackle tandems, in terms of pure athletic talent. You cannot make that argument with the roster as it stands now. Can’t say I understand if Gaither fits into what Mudd does–from my understanding he likes little quick guys with high motors, which has worked out well on the defensive side of the ball (eyes rolling).

  19. 19 Tommy Lawlor said at 5:14 PM on June 8th, 2011:

    Gaither isn’t elite. Not even close. Ravens shopped him last year and found no takers. That tells you NFL teams didn’t see him anywhere close to elite.

    Talented? Yes. Lots of potential. He does have issues. I’m not so sure he’d be a true upgrade on Justice. Winston is more naturally talented. We’d be replacing one inconsistent player with another. Not sure how wise that is.

    Justice got benched because he wasn’t playing well, but that was partly due to having a bad knee. He wasn’t that bad all year.

    Mudd can deal with big OTs. He likes his interior OL small.

  20. 20 Chris A said at 1:55 AM on June 10th, 2011:

    How about if we gave him good guaranteed money, and then after say two years the contract becomes performance based. That way in the first two years he is getting the $$ he is after, we get our RCB at the most crucial time to make a SB run(potentially back to back) and then after those two years he’ll be paid according to his performances so we would either be paying premium money for premium talent, or we can pay him peanuts for poor performance and hopefully his backup has learnt enough and stepped up(and if that backup turns out to be half as good as NA then i will be happy with that). I think with the pieces we have in place, next year will be our best chance at going over the top. It’s all good looking down the road and the good of the team in the future, but i’m pretty sure these guys would prefer a ring or two potentially followed by a drop off for a year or two, rather than just playoff appearances.

  21. 21 Chris A said at 2:01 AM on June 10th, 2011:

    And aswell, I think we don’t give the players enough credit saying it will create a bad locker room if we pay NA over the top. Im not saying give him Haynesworth stupid guaranteed money, but pay him the amount he deserves. If it were the case that he is the missing piece to us getting a SB ring, I don’t see the other players having a problem with that, they may be divas, but c’mon, if you were playing, would you rather an extra mil in your contract or a SB ring ? Money comes and goes, but being SB champs, they can’t take that away. Look at dilfer,eli etc. Hate on them all you want, you cannot take the SB ring away from them. I want that glory!!