Ndamukong Suh is well on his way to becoming a premier defensive tackle; he’s far away from being a good leader. Suh wanted his jersey to hold a “C” sign in the corner for some time. He got his chance, getting named a team captain for the 2013 season. However, being a captain and a leader is more than just the stitching on a jersey; it’s leading through actions that speak volumes towards intentions and character – something Suh doesn’t do often enough.
Suh isn’t a leader on the Lions despite what jersey he wears, or what some of his teammates may say publicly. Teammates that defend his actions are doing what good teammates do. Suh’s racked up enormous amounts of fines, has committed some questionable acts including stomping on a player and supposedly “accidentally” kicking a quarterback in the groin, and was accused of bullying teammates on the practice field. He started off the 2013 season with an illegal-block penalty against a Minnesota Vikings lineman, which wiped out a DeAndre Levy touchdown.
Suh brought out his mop, cleaning up the penalties and the on-field antics for the rest of the season. He played really well and was a dominant force throughout the middle of the Lions’ defensive line. He’s unbelievably talented and physically gifted; it’s a shame his leadership isn’t.
Reports leaked out to some media members about Suh trying to show dominance over Schwartz and being unjustly rough against teammates during practices of the 2013 season. This would be the second season in a row where media members have received information painting Suh as a problem in the locker room. Are these reports true? Not necessarily. Could the players be made up or making things up? Possibly, but when Suh is known to have a bad reputation and a lack of respect for the game of football, those aren’t far-fetched ideas.
Suh is accused of lacking passion and love for football; many believe that he wants a career in the media. Supporters will laugh at those criticisms. They’ll change the channel when they hear such absurd things. They’ll click out of an article like this that dares point out such unjust points about Suh. There’s truth to people believing the bad though. Examine Suh and his lackadaisical attitude involving negotiating his contract.
Detroit wants to resign Suh and he wants to remain in Detroit. What’s this defensive leader doing throughout the ordeal? Firing his agent, being lengthy on selecting a new one, and even going to such ridiculous heights as wanting to represent himself. Suh needs to take football more seriously. An agent should have been signed and he should be discussing his deal a bit more than he is. How can the thought of representing himself even pop into his seemingly intelligent mind? He should shove that idea aside quicker than he would an offensive lineman.
Suh finally hired a new agent, and Detroit is now even readier to sign the tackle. It’s about time. Actions like the above lead people – rightly so, to believe that Suh doesn’t put his team first. Suh needs to examine himself and his intentions more thoroughly. He needs to put his desires on a slide and stick them under a microscope, allowing a closer view for him to see himself.
Hall of Fame defensive Tackle Warren Sapp constantly bashes Suh and extends an arm out to teach the young tackle some things, however Suh has yet to accept his invitation. Sapp may be a big-mouth, but he’s in the Hall of Fame and has won a Super Bowl. True team players do things the right way. They take football seriously. They acknowledge flaws and grow from them. They do things in a timely manner. It was pretty simple to restructure Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson‘s deal; that’s the way team players are. Suh has much knowledge that still needs to find its way into his stubborn head. He is still haunted by his dirty plays – something he has done a better job of fixing. It’s still said that many teammates lack respect for him, accusing him of being selfish. The way he handled his agent situation was ludicrous, giving people ammunition for their turrets filled with Suh critiques. If the Lions do work out a deal, they need to put a clause in the contract that makes Suh examine himself. Maybe then he’ll finally put the team first.