RedEye

Suh plays dirty, and NFL doesn't care

Ndamukong Suh plays like an idiot and a punk, and the NFL will let him do it again this week.

Wait, I thought the NFL cared about player safety.

Suh threw a low, potentially career-ending hit on Vikings center John Sullivan during Sunday’s game, but his dirty act drew just a fine of $100,000.

The fine sounds like a big deal, but it’s a piddling amount compared to Suh’s earnings and it’s certainly no more than a found penny to the multi-billion-dollar NFL.

What matters is that Suh is free to send a player to surgery this Sunday.

Suh said Wednesday he’s appealing his fine. The Lions defensive tackle claims the punishment is too excessive.

No, actually, it isn’t severe enough.

How does the NFL not suspend Suh? He’s a recidivist punk. He’s dirty at every turn, it seems, and the NFL knows it.

And the NFL choked.

The league only fined Suh for his despicable play. The league has fined Suh five times in four seasons for dirty, stupid and/or despicable acts. It doesn’t seem to be working. Suh hasn’t changed because of this laughable punishment. Connect the dots, Roger Goodell.

Suh’s open-field shot at Sullivan’s knee was as blatant as anything the Saints got suspended for, by the way.

It’s perfect that Suh is appealing his punishment: A player who doesn’t care about honest play is asking that his fine be reduced by a league that doesn’t care about honest play, either.

For all of its grand pronouncements about protecting players, the NFL not only failed here, but also has been exposed here.

Exposed again, I should say. The NFL’s concern about players hurting players is a big lie -- as big of a lie as Suh is a punk. The league and Suh are recidivist in their respective dark areas.

Look, concussions aren’t the only danger that players face. They just happen to be the most recently litigated. The NFL cares about litigation. The NFL cares more about litigation than shots to the knee.

Tell you what, if the NFL can’t take smarter action, then I believe other players will. They hate Suh’s act. It threatens their livelihood. 

For players -- other than the entire stupid and undisciplined bunch in Detroit, I mean -- one of the aggravating parts of Suh’s adding to his cheap-shot legend is that it was the kind of hit that defensive players have railed about for years.

Brian Urlacher famously and regularly took shots at the NFL for ignoring the dangers of chop blocks and acts that targeted knees. The NFL made it impossible for defensive players to tackle cleanly and honestly, Urlacher would indicate when he went on down this road, but offensive players could deliver shots that take out ACLs.

But such player awareness would assume that Suh cares. Obviously he doesn’t. He repeatedly pulls these dangerous and ridiculous stunts.  But Suh walked on this charge. Pathetic. Embarrassing.

Players see that stuff. Players see how the league that supposedly is looking out for their welfare is letting a toxic player stay in uniform. Players talk.

You watch, a center and a guard will conspire to take out Suh at the knees. Take him out hard. Ford Field justice.

And it should be no more than a fine, right? Hasn’t the NFL already established that precedent?

I don’t know what Goodell and his clown posse were thinking here, but a plaintiff who wanted to bring suit against the league for unsafe working conditions would seem to have evidence here that the only time the NFL cares about player safety is when Congress or the courts force it to.

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
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