Howie Roseman Felt Nnamdi Asomugha Was Too ‘Unique’ of a Player To Pass Up, Alludes to Keeping Asante Samuel and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie

August 1, 2011 – 5:00 pm by Steven Cuce

The Philadelphia Eagles are now being called the “Dream Team” after general manager Howie Roseman’s wildly successful two day shopping spree late last week. Perhaps the prized acquisition of them all was Roseman’s trick play to sign the most coveted cornerback in the market in Nnamdi Asomugha last Friday.

As expected, Roseman first traded Kevin Kolb traded to Arizona for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second round draft pick. He then signed Pro Bowl defensive end Jason Babin, followed by two-time Pro Bowl quarterback Vince Young to back up Michael Vick. Roseman then decided to send one last text message to Asomugha’s agent, Ben Dogra, early Friday morning. As it happened, Dogra was texting Roseman at the same time, which Dogra though was more than just an eerie coincidence. The rest, as they say, is history.  To round out the wildly successful free agency period, Roseman added Cullen Jenkins on Saturday afternoon.

It’s all smiles in Eagles land for Howie Roseman, but as there always is in the NFL, there are still issues on the horizon to tend to, such as Asante Samuel’s comments about his future in Philly and DeSean Jackson’s holdout. Roseman does his best to cover all his bases in the following interview with WIP in Philadelphia.

Eagles GM Howie Roseman joined WIP in Philadelphia with Rob Ellis & Glen Macnow to discuss flying under the radar to sign Nnamdi Asomugha, trading Asante Samuel or Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie possibly after signing Nnamdi Asomugha, the Philadelphia Eagles having other needs to address on defense rather than keeping three talented cornerbacks, DeSean Jackson outplaying his contract and deserving a new one to end his holdout and the thought process behind signing Vince Young.

Give us the quick capsule. How did you get Nnamdi Asomugha here under the radar?

“Well I think it is an attribute to the relationship we have with the guys at CAA and in this particular case Ben Dogra. We had told them all along that that we were really happy with our cornerback situation once we acquired DRC [Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie], who we think is one of the top young players at the position in the NFL and of course with Asante Samuel and Joselio Hanson and we have been drafting a couple of young corners. To be honest with you guys we have a couple of young corners in camp in the first few days who look really good even guys beyond that. We were excited about our corner situation once we made that trade with Arizona, but this is a guy who is a unique player. I mean probably one of the greatest cornerbacks in the history of this league. When you have the unique opportunity to get a guy like this with his kind of character and what he brings to the football team I think we owe it to our team and to all the people on our team, the players on our team, our fans, to go and try to make an effort to get him.”

Is it fair to say that you may consider trading one of the three talent cornerbacks you have on the roster now with the addition of Nnamdi Asomugha?

“I think the philosophy is that it is hard to get guys who can make a difference. We got a lot draft picks here the last few years. Hopefully we will have a lot more to come, so we weren’t looking for role players or guys who can just come in and play in a part-time basis or be situational guys. We thought it was an opportunity to maybe get guys who can make a difference because we think we drafted some good players, so really we targeted specific players not necessarily the positions. Guys who we thought had the unique opportunity to be on the market because there are twice as many free agents and because we were positioned to go after a couple of guys. That’s really where we were. It was specific guys as oppose to specific positions.”

Do you have other needs that you could spend $6 million dollars on rather than keep three talented cornerbacks?

“Well I think it is going to be hard to replace a Pro-Bowl player at this juncture with six million dollars. I think we are fortunate to be in this situation and we are happy with our team. When we look at our roster right now we’re excited. We think we have a roster that is ready to contend for a championship and obviously things can happen during the season, but we like where our roster is right now.”

Is it fair to say DeSean Jackson has outplayed his contract and deserves a new one?

“This is what I will say about DeSean. We love DeSean Jackson. We’ve told him that we appreciate him and that he is a heck of a player and we’re excited to get him back in and help us contend for a World Championship. I kind of will leave it at that. Everything else I would like to stay between us and him.”

Give us the thought process in signing Vince Young and what he might mean to you as an organization?

“I don’t think anyone can deny that Vince Young is a rare talent. This is a guy who is a two-time Pro Bowler, won ‘Comeback Player Of The Year’, had phenomenal success at the college level. He’s got unique abilities as a play-maker. It’s hard to find play-makers in this league especially at the quarterback position. I feel very fortunate to be the general manager of a team that has coaches who have outstanding success with quarterbacks. If you give Andy Reid, Marty Mornhinweg, Doug Pederson – you give those guys a talented guy like this – in this offense with the weapons we have and the offensive line we hope to develop here in the next few weeks with continuity I think that is exciting for us. I don’t want to take anything away from Mike Kafka because we like Mike Kafka. Mike Kafka here looks like one of the most improved players in camp, but again if you can have good players at that position I think it is just a luxury you are looking for. We thought in getting Vince Young here it was an opportunity for both us really to have a mutual fit, but at the same token we still like Mike Kafka, so we think we have three quarterbacks here and I don’t want short change Jerrod Johnson who is a developing guy and more probably down the line, but in those three guys we feel like we have a really good quarterback situation.”

Listen to Howie Roseman on WIP in Philadelphia here

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