Falcons released CB Asante Samuel.

The writing was on the wall for this one. Samuel turned 33 years old last month and had been relegated to backup duties at the end of the season so the Falcons could get looks at youngsters CBs Robert Alford and Desmond Trufant. The move clears over $4 million in 2014 cap space. Samuel is a four-time Pro Bowler, but his best days are obviously behind him. Pro Football Focus graded Samuel out as its No. 57 corner out of 110 qualifiers in 2013. Rotoworld ranks Samuel 15th among free agent cornerbacks, behind Terrell Thomas and DeAngelo Hall.
Falcons released OLB Stephen Nicholas.

Nicholas, 31 in May, started 17 games -- including the playoffs -- at strong-side linebacker in 2012 but had been relegated to backup and special teams duties this past season. He notched just 35 tackles and one sack in 14 games. The Falcons save $2 million against the 2014 salary cap with the release of Nicholas. Joplo Bartu played mostly well as Atlanta's strong-side 'backer in 2013.
rotoworld