Philadelphia Eagles’ CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie must have never imagined that he would end up taking the job of one of his idols.
But that is exactly what happened during this year’s off-season when ex-Eagles’ CB Asante Samuel was shipped off to the Atlanta Falcons for a seventh-round draft pick, and Rodgers-Cromartie took the starting gig.
The two cornerbacks will meet face-to-face this Sunday afternoon, now in different uniforms, when the Falcons do battle with the Eagles.
Rodgers-Cromartie came to the Eagles in 2011 following a high-profile trade with the Arizona Cardinals, which also sent former Eagles’ QB Kevin Kolb out to the desert.
Following the Rodgers-Cromartie trade, there was much speculation about how time would be split between the Eagles’ three stud cornerbacks in Samuel, Rodgers-Cromartie and recently signed Nnamdi Asomugha. It seemed at first that Rodgers-Cromartie was going to be used mostly in nickel and dime defensive packages, but his talent seemed too promising to be a part-time player.
Samuel’s trade was not really that surprising, but did upset some Eagles’ fans due to his track record as an interception machine and a consistent Pro-Bowl talent in Philly and with the New England Patriots.
This week, even Rodgers-Cromartie voiced his admiration for his one-year teammate.
“I always used to say I’m like Asante Samuel,” said Rodgers-Cromartie. “When I get that ball in my hands, I’m gonna score.”
But saying something to the media, and saying something to the man himself are very different things.
“I never told him that. I never will tell him that,” stated Rodgers-Cromartie in regards to telling Samuel of his original idolization of the veteran cornerback.
If Rodgers-Cromartie was going to tell Samuel, it would have been a better idea to do so while they were still teammates. Even though the two cornerbacks are still friends, they will be enemies on the field this Sunday and should save the warm-words for another time.
There is nothing wrong with idolizing another NFL player, especially a player like Samuel considering he is truly one of the best cornerbacks to ever play the game in my opinion.
But I do agree with Rodgers-Cromartie when it comes to not sharing his feelings with Samuel, because Rodgers-Cromartie is now at the NFL-level as well, and I’m sure he hopes to surpass Samuel’s accomplishments and accolades.
So on Sunday afternoon, the two cornerbacks should share a nice pre-game handshake and bro-hug, but beyond that, let’s get real. It will be time to play some football.
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