First, I’m not going to apologize for writing about football on the BB&B blog. I’m sure Ndamukong Suh has eaten plenty of barbeque and drunk plenty of beer – or if he hasn’t, he could. And now he’ll be getting his fill in Miami with the Dolphins. And I am not happy about that, at all.
I am indeed a Dolphin fan, have been since before the glory days of the early ’70’s. Back in those first glory days, the Fins were known for a tough, swarming defense, anchored by guys like Manny Fernandez and Nick Buoniconti. In the 80’s they had the Killer B’s, with Bob Baumhower, the Blackwood brothers, and non-B (but definitely killer) A.J. Duhe. And now Miami has added a guy with the chance to be their best defensive player ever in Ndamukong Suh.
So why am I not celebrating? Why am I, instead, disappointed, even angry?
Sweet action, yes?
In a word, dirty. Suh is feared for two reasons; he’s the best defensive tackle in the game, and called by many the dirtiest player in the game. The Dolphins certainly need the former, but they’re probably the one team that can least afford to take on the baggage of the dirtiest player. Does anyone, and I mean, *anyone*, actually think the gutless coaching staff that let Richie Incognito gut the team from the inside is going to step in and discipline Suh when he goes overboard against another team’s’ players? That they’d discipline their star off-season acquisition? Remember, this staff (and by staff, read complete moron Joe Philbin) thought it was a great idea to “toughen up” Jonathan Martin by having Incognito bully him. Great idea; let’s use the guy who’s been kicked out of every organization since college for being a major tool, get the most potential out of Martin by hazing him. And Philbin, this joke of a coach who watched this all unfold (or was blissfully unaware of it), this leader of men who watched his team absolutely choke away the playoffs in 2013, this paragon of virtue, is going to reign in Suh, the dirtiest player since Conrad Dobler? Uh huh, sure he is.
And on top of all this, the league is reportedly investigating the deal because it appears (in fact, is glaringly obvious) that it was negotiated during the no-tampering period. So the front office can’t even follow league rules. And they’ll demand that Suh will follow the rules? Suh has defended himself, stating that “I wish people would get to know me”, and “People kind of had their minds made up already”. Maybe, Ndamukong, because the main way they know you is from your play. And they made up their minds from your previous incidents. Do a Google search on “Suh reputation”, and you’ll see articles from 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 detailing on-field incidents. Do the same for Cameron Wake, and you’ll see articles for big plays and general respect. Gee, Mr. Suh, maybe the reason people have their minds made up is because you keep doing this crap. Packers fans are simply the latest group to learn you’re a great guy, that you’re really just misunderstood.
But I was helping him up, sir. With my foot.
Here’s another thing – a lot of people are defending Suh because he’s never had any off field incidents. Very true; he’s a regular Boy Scout by NFL standards. No murder charges, no spousal abuse, no drug trafficking, no child endangerment. Good for him. So he gets a pass for his on-field crap because he hasn’t stomped on anyone in a nightclub? Sorry, no.
Most Dolphin fans are thrilled about signing Suh, judging by the social media buzz. I’m sure their question would be, “Do you want to win, or run a charm school?” They’d probably snarl and spit after they said it, too, cuz, you know, manly. Yes, I do want to win, but not at any cost. Stomping on an opponent’s leg after the play isn’t sport. The mentality of winning at any price is so wrong, so very, very wrong. You can be tough, very tough, without being dirty. Suh’s play should be intimidating enough without resorting to his cagey little tricks. If he cleans up his act, I’ll be very happy, and celebrate his signing then. Suh is a legitimate force on the D line, but he won’t be running the ball, or catching any passes, and the Fins need a lot of help there, too.
Listen, I do not intend to come off as the Angry Guy here; more the Disappointed Guy. I hope Suh cleans up his act, I really do. He’s a great addition to the Fins, as long as he avoids those little “Oh, pardon me, I seem to have crushed your ankle” incidents. Nothing would make me happier than eating my words in about a year, but this is how I see it: Bad signing. Bad guy. Bad organization.