Before the Lions’ 24-17 victory over the Jets, Ndamukong Suh made some major waves after he let slip yesterday that he wants out of Detroit and that his sights are set on the Big Apple. The question is, which of the two MetLife Stadium tenants would be the better fit for the mercurially-tempered all-pro defensive lineman?
On the surface, Suh seems like a Jet through and through. With Rex Ryan leading the charge of the Jets’ perpetually chippy and brash personality, the Jets would appear to be willing to withstand the extensive baggage that Suh would bring with him from the Lions. He’d immediately become the face of the Jets franchise that is always trying to fight for the media attention that the Giants were seemingly just handed outright. It seems almost too perfect of a fit, but it wouldn’t come as a surprise if the Jets tried to move heaven and earth to get him.
But what if the Giants were to get him?
Well, for one, it would make the Giants defensive line fearful again. Everybody knows that the Giants’ recent championship runs were heavily reliant on the pressure up front. With Suh, that dominance would return again. It’s no secret that the interior line hasn’t been as strong this year, which continues to make the decision to let Linval Joseph leave without much resistance (if any at all) all the more perplexing. Suh would salve that wound immediately and would upgrade the position depth chart into one of the league’s best in the process.
Would the Giants be able to accept Suh’s propensity for his long-running list of dirty and stupid antics? The Giants are a gold standard type of franchise. They don’t necessarily court the kind of stuff that brings negative publicity. (The slight implication of John Mara’s involvement in the Ravens’ fiasco couldn’t have been a fun topic to broach.)
Even more on a football level, could a hardline coach like Tom Coughlin stomach the potential of any Suh play ending up in a free 15 yards for the opposing offenses? Even a more relaxed Coughlin, who seems intent to keep on coaching until he physically disintegrates to ash, wouldn’t want to deal with that at this point in his career.
Yet, it can’t be completely ruled out. There is a precedent that GM Jerry Reese is not afraid to pursue problem children defensive linemen. He was willing to sign Albert Haynesworth before Washington swooped in. And thank goodness they did, because Haynesworth ended up being a disaster and is now nowhere to be found.
Suh is better than Haynesworth ever was. He’s a game-changer. That makes him enticing. That makes him one that teams would allow some forgiveness for his ornery play.
And it brings in a string of big “what-if” questions: What if the structure of the former Jim Schwartz regime was a poisonous well? What if a little organizational structure and organizational standards is what he needs to get him under control? Sure, it sounds like an analogy of the sweetheart lady who is trying to rein in her bad boy boyfriend to make him more appealing to her father, but still, what if?
All of what we know makes it look pretty obvious that the Jets would like to have him. The Giants would, as well, but only at the behest that Suh is capable of leaving his quarterback-stomping ways far behind him. If for nothing else, it could spark quite a bidding war. To add to the intrigue, the Lions will almost assuredly try to slap the franchise tender on him. It’s just good business to force either team to gift the Lions with the Giants’ or Jets’ first-rounder in 2015. It would be a pretty big shock if he walks out of Motown and the Lions don’t care one bit.
The race in free-agency is on already.
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