On the play Falcons cornerback Samuel when was beaten, he was playing the left cornerback position that Brent Grimes, the team’s highest paid defender, normally occupies.
But Samuel has told the coaches that he has a preference to play on the left side because the NFL is a right-handed passing league. The coaching staff likely will have to figure out how to deploy their three cornerbacks.
“It was a double move and the receiver separated on the double move,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said. “It was a nice throw and a nice catch.”
There was a report that the Falcons were able to get Samuel so cheaply — for a seventh round pick — because the Eagles felt his skills were in steep decline. Smith bristled at the notion that the Bengals caught Samuel peeking into backfield or that his reputation for gambling for interceptions was exploited.
“Listen, Asante has played very effective football for a long, long time,” Smith said. “It was a well executed play by the offense.”
Samuel and Green were battling.
“We were going at it,” Samuel said. “I relaxed on the deep ball a little bit, and he got over on top of me.”
Samuel, a noted film student, was not surprised by the deep pass.
“It was third-and-long, so it was time to put the ball up,” Samuel said.
Samuel is the NFL’s all-time leader with four postseason interception returns for touchdowns. He also leads the NFL with 39 interceptions since 2006.
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