Three reasons Ndamukong Suh could return to Lions and three why he won’t

A free agent, Suh will be looking for big money

Ndamukong Suh is officially a free agent after he was released by the Miami Dolphins on Wednesday. It appears to be a salary cap move.

Suh, the second overall NFL draft pick in 2010 by the Lions, spent five seasons in Detroit. He was no doubt a factor on the field, but he was a conundrum off the field and in the locker room where he never seemed to be a good fit.

The 31-year-old defensive tackle had his own way, his own logo and even in Jim Caldwell’s first year as Lions head coach, Suh skipped the spring workouts to work on his own.

Suh tried a group hug with the Lions media in his last season, but he was a tough guy to cover. (By the way, he’s only NFL player to block me on Twitter and I see that as a badge of honor.)

Mike Freeman, NFL columnist for Bleacher Report, has an interesting take that he shared on Twitter: “Interest in Suh isn’t extensive because he wants a sh—load of money. That’s a technical term. Sh—load. And teams have finally learned Suh isn’t worth a lot of money because he takes too many plays off.”

Several reports are listing the Lions as one possible option for Suh.

Three reasons Suh could return to Lions:

1.. They need help on the defensive line. Badly. Don’t know what Matt Patricia thinks, but he’s a defensive guy and it would seem he’d at least be intrigued. Suh is durable. He’s missed just two games in eight seasons and that was due to a suspension while in Detroit.

2. Suh will not be cheap, but more reasonable than when he left for the Dolphins in 2015.

3. New coach and different GM could spell a clean slate.

Three reasons he won’t return to Detroit:

1. It’s not all about sacks but his best sack production was as a rookie in 2010 when he had 10. In the past two seasons in Miami he’s had a combined 9.5.

2. He is not a savior. The Dolphins went to the playoffs in just one of his three seasons there. It wasn’t all his fault, of course. Did they get their money’s worth? The Lions went to the playoffs in two of his five seasons.

3. His reputation may not be attractive to GM Bob Quinn and Patricia. Suh brings so many intangibles — not all good. Tough to sort out. Been there, done that. Moved on three years ago, no reason to circle back.



Author: Paula Pasche

Paula Pasche, a veteran sports writer, covers the Detroit Lions for her Lions Lowdown blog. She has written two books, "Game of My Life Detroit Lions" and "100 Things Lions Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die" which are available at bookstores and on She won first place for column writing from the Society of Professional Journalists in Detroit (Class B) in 2011, 2012 and 2013 and was The Oakland Press 2010 Staffer of the Year.

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