Are the Lions looking to trade defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh?
At this point it looks like it may be possible, but no where close yet to happening according to Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller, who cites several NFL team officials that indeed the Lions have been gauging the interest in a potential trade for Suh.
However “gauging interest” in a player is a lot different from actively shopping someone who Miller couldn’t really stress enough. This is the same sentiment that the unnamed NFL team officials seemed to indicate as well saying that Martin Mayhew and the Lions’ front office is simply doing their “due diligence” just in case contract talks between the Lions and Suh break down.
“What the Lions are doing is standard operating procedure,” one team executive said. “Just in case they don’t think they can sign him, they’re preparing for worst case. It’s smart.”
A breakdown in contract negotiations doesn’t seem to be the entirety of the Lions’ situation when it comes to Suh though. First Miller points out that the general feeling around the League is Suh and the Lions will eventually work something out and that the defensive tackle will remain a Detroit Lion with a new contract. However when it comes to trading the talented defensive lineman, Miller quotes an NFL team official in saying that any team would love to have Suh but are hesitant to hand over a bunch of cash simply because of his on field behavior.
“Every team in football would love to have (Suh),” said one team official, “but his behavior on the field still makes teams nervous. There’s a feeling that he has no self-control.”
Fans didn’t need to know that money is a huge issue in all of this though. Aside from team’s being weary of Suh possibly going postal on the field the next contract Suh signs whether it be with the Lions or someone else is surely going to be massive. Currently Suh cost the Lions roughly $22 million dollars in total cap space and is on the final year of his contract. The numbers are astronomical, are around what starting quarterbacks make in the NFL and nowhere near what an interior defensive lineman should command.
Then again you could make the argument that Suh isn’t your ordinary defensive lineman. He’s physical, punishing and demands a double-team on many plays. He also hasn’t shown up for voluntary offseason workouts which has rubbed Lions’ fans, media and perhaps teammates the wrong way. This is especially considering it’s an opportune time to get to know the new coaching staff and show that you’re committed to being a team leader something he allegedly wanted to be last season.
Either way Suh’s going to make a ton of money next year, so much money that it may just be in the Lions’ best interest to let him go, ideally through a trade. Detroit still has too many holes and really can no longer afford to dedicate so much money into three players.