THE DEAL- Asante was one of the most sought after free agents of the 2008 off-season. He had his new deal completed on the first day of free agency. Asante would now be wearing number 22 for the Eagles to the tune $56 million over six years.
THE VERDICT- Because Asante Samuel ended up leaving for much greener pastures than the Patriots were going to offer, you can't really say that Belichick let him go. Did Belichick put himself in a bind by the way the 2007 off-season went down, yes absolutely.
NO MONEY- Signing Adalius Thomas cost the Patriots money. It is money that could have helped keep Asante Samuel around. Additionally, when you look at the cap numbers for Patriot players in 2007 and 2008, you can see that the Patriots were in a bit of cap jail in 2008. After having their incredible 16-0 regular season run with Brady, Moss and Welker accounting for only $12 million on the cap, their caps would more than double the following year.