Looks like Suh isn’t willing to pay his fine and move on. Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh has decided to appeal the fine because he and his agent feel it is excessive. His appeal will be held on Friday via a conference call.
If you haven’t seen the play in question, here’s what happened. A Detroit Lions player intercepted a pass and was returning it. Vikings center John Sullivan was chasing the ball carrier when Suh dove at his knees and took him to the ground. The hit looked devastating. It is the kind of play that can knock a player out for the season. One thing that people tend to forget is that John Sullivan had just finished recovering from microfracture surgery on his knee.
After the game on Sunday, Suh approached Sullivan and apologized for the hit. Although Sullivan accepted his apology, he still has a bad taste in his mouth from the incident.
“I’m just happy I wasn’t hurt — seriously injured. There’s a reason that play is illegal. It’s incredibly dangerous. I just feel fortunate that I’ll be playing this week.” – Vikings center John Sullivan
Sullivan wasn’t the only one who was vocal about what happened and the repercussions of the incident. Suh himself had some words about it.
“By any means, I’m not going for his knees. He knows that. We had a great conversation running out at halftime. And he understood. My aim was his waist, to cut him off.” – Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh
Although Suh hasn’t said much about that, his teammates and agents have. They have come to defend him and support him at this time.
“He apologized to the team. It was sincere. We accepted it. We all a family, and that’s our brother. At the end of the day, we all we got. So, it was a good deal. Levy accepted it, so if he can accept it, everybody should be able to accept it.” – Lions running back Joique Bell
“Everyone is talking about how Ndamukong shouldn’t have blocked the 300-pound lineman because there was no way he was going to catch a linebacker. If that’s the case, the lineman should’ve known he wasn’t going to catch the linebacker. But the lineman did attempt to catch the linebacker and Ndamukong attempted to block him. But everyone wants to make Ndamukong out to be a villain. Ndamukong plays within the rules. He plays hard. He’s just an easy target.” – Suh’s agent, Roosevelt Barnes
Perhaps Suh, Barnes, and his teammates have forgotten about Suh’s history with fines and overly-aggressive play on the football field. Over the course of his 4 year career, Suh has been committed the following memorable acts:
- The Thanksgiving Stomp - Who can forget Thanksgiving of 2011? Suh shoved Packers center Evan Dietrich-Smith’s head into the ground several times before finishing with a stomp on his arm. Suh later claimed that he wasn’t trying to stomp on him, just regain his balance so he could stand up.
- Schaub’s Knob - Thanksgiving isn’t a great time for Suh. On Thanksgiving of 2012, Suh kicked Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub in the groin. Suh said the kick wasn’t intentional and it was an accident when he was being dragged to the ground.
In a poll of NFL players by The Sporting News, Suh was declared “The Dirtiest Player in the NFL”. Forbes magazine has also declared him to be the “Least Liked Player in the NFL”.
Suh doesn’t plan on changing his game style. He told the Associated Press “I’m going to continue to play hard, blue-collar football.” How long will Suh continue this type of play before he understands that it hurts other players, it hurts his team, and it hurts him financially? What will it take? Bigger fines? Suspensions? A ban from the game? It will be interesting to see what happens the next time Suh has an incident like this.