FanDuel - WFBC

December 26, 2013

Nnamdi Asomugha Retires as an Oakland Raider: Three seasons ago, cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha was one of the most coveted free agents in the NFL at any position and signed a five-year, $60 million contract with the Philadelphia Eagles. Tomorrow is his last day in the NFL. He's signing a one-day deal to retire as an Oakland Raider.

posted by rcade to football at 10:16 PM - 8 comments

I like the comment in the sponsor ad somebody bought on Pro Football Reference: "You stole the Eagles' money, and then you stole Kerry Washington. You, sir, are a monster."

I did not expect him to be a free-agent bust. I thought he'd help the Eagles dominate the NFC East.

posted by rcade at 10:17 PM on December 26

Agreed. He and Rodgers-Cromartie were supposed to be killers for us ... sigh

posted by jjzucal at 10:36 AM on December 27

The hype that followed that guy from the beginning, supposedly being the second-coming of Revis, was ridiculous and unfair. Too bad, but that's the way it goes. So many overrated players are the big thing one day, out of the game the next.

posted by dyams at 11:55 AM on December 27

He was an astute and skilled positional player. I'm amazed at what a remarkable percentage of his tight coverages and pass attempt break-ups were clean and flag-free. He only got penalized an average of about once every other game per season at most.

posted by beaverboard at 12:09 PM on December 27

The hype that followed that guy from the beginning, supposedly being the second-coming of Revis, was ridiculous and unfair. Too bad, but that's the way it goes. So many overrated players are the big thing one day, out of the game the next.

How could he be the second-coming of a guy who came after him?

Nnamdi was second-team all-pro in 2006 and Revis made his first pro bowl in 2009. There was a reason he flew so far under the radar - starting in 2006, people stopped throwing at him, so he didn't have to many many plays.

Nnamdi was a press corner put into a zone system. It wasn't that he was overrated, it was that he and DRC were products of an Eagles front-office who made shitty personnel decisions for their system. Imagine signing JJ Watt and boxing him into a traditional 3-4 role.

posted by dfleming at 04:49 PM on December 27

Even though Asomugha came first, he and Revis were compared to each other starting around 2009, when Revis was the bigger name and Nnamdi, in my recollection, was compared to him. The talk when he left Oakland was that the Eagles were getting someone comparable to Revis. Never worked out that way.

posted by dyams at 08:16 PM on December 27

I thought the problem in Philly was they signed a great man-to-man cover to play zone (or vice versa) and it didn't work out. What I didn't understand was why someone else didn't put him back in the system he fit and had success again. Either it was bad luck or he was the product of a system that made him look terrific. It will be interesting to see if Revis forces a relocation of his Island given Tampa has done much the same to him.

posted by yerfatma at 09:30 AM on December 30

No doubt - and even one level higher as they put an Offensive Line coach - Juan Castillo - in as Defensive Co-ordinator. After that it's not really a surprise that players were asked to work outside their specialised and preferred roles.

Asomugha made his living in Oakland playing between the receiver and the Quarterback and using the sideline for help. At which point you could forget about that side of the field and Oakland would play a high low Safety mix. Meanwhile, in Philly, Castillo had the defence roll assignments about, meaning you could take Asomugha out of coverage simply by using motion, at which point he'd shift responsibility to some sort of deep safety role and he's just not the same player in space.

There's a play at the end of the game against the Giants last year, where New York needs a score with time running out. The Eagles play some sort of cover 3, but with the Giants throwing three receivers to the left, instead of playing off cover for his deep third, Asomugha comes up to press the receiver, maintains a perfect trail position and would have had an interception if not for the receiver he was covering mugging him and drawing a flag.

I'd have to imagine that maintaining elite play at Corner into your 30s is hard - Champ Bailey is some sort of freak - but Philly could have got a lot more out of Asomugha if they'd got out of their own way.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:26 AM on December 30

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