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Asomugha says Samuel could have fit on Eagles' D

Cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha headlined a horde of free-agent acquisitions in Philadelphia last offseason that, at first blush, transformed the Eagles into a Super Bowl contender.

They played nowhere near that caliber last season, and Asomugha's early frustrations in the defensive backfield hammered home what he now believes: Building a winning team is a slow-cook process.

"There was a lot of the hype around it," Asomugha said during an appearance on "The Rich Eisen Podcast" set to air May 24 on NFL Network. "There were great stories that you could put in before the season started ... but, you know, I think it just goes to show that it takes time to build a team. In the ultimate team sport that we're playing, with football, you can't just do it overnight."

Asomugha, who fell to No. 79 on "The Top 100: Players of 2012" after ranking 18th in 2011, regretted seeing cornerback Asante Samuel traded to the Atlanta Falcons. Along with Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, the trio had problems jelling in Philly's defensive backfield, but Asomugha believed another season together would have helped.

"I thought it could have worked, and I still think it could've worked," Asomugha told Eisen. "Everybody keeps saying that, you know, 'No, it can't work, you three, blah blah blah. ' I still thought it could've worked, even coming into this season. Asante and I would talk about it through the offseason, like, we can fix this. ... Now we've got another year under our belt; now we've got time; and then he's gone. So now it's like you don't get that chance to put it back out there. But, you know, it's whatever, and he's happy with where he is."

Don't miss this one. Rich's conversation with Asomugha airs May 24 at 4:30 p.m. ET on NFL Network. You can download full podcasts at http://richeisen.nfl.com/ or subscribe on iTunes.

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