Ndamukong Suh to Play Against Cowboys
The Detroit Lions lost defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh a day ago, and now they have him back. Just a day after getting suspended for Detroit’s wild card game against the Dallas Cowboys, Suh reportedly has won his appeal and will have his suspension lifted.
Instead of serving a one-game ban for stepping on the ankle of Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Suh will merely pay a $70,000 fine and will not miss any action.
More interesting that the suspension being overturned was why it was issued in the first place, or whether or not it ever should have been. Video shows Suh backing up after being lightly pushed by a Green Bay offensive lineman, and then twice stepping on Aaron Rodgers’ leg. Rodgers was already laying on the ground and Suh stepped on him initially, and then stepped on him a second time as he continued to back pedal – this time putting all of his weight onto one leg.
Watching the tape in real time suggests it’s at least possible that Suh didn’t even notice Rodgers, hence potentially truly making it an accident. Of course, given Suh’s nasty history of dirty plays throughout his career, many football experts speculated early that Suh knew exactly what he was doing.
While Suh probably meant to step on Rodgers, it was brief and didn’t cause any injury to Rodgers, so taking Suh out of a huge playoff game perhaps wouldn’t have been a case of “punishment fitting the crime”, anyways.
Not having Suh would have been a major blow for the Lions, regardless of who their opponent was going to be. But going up against DeMarco Murray and the Cowboys on the road? They could have been in serious trouble.
With Suh officially still able to play now, the Lions will walk into Jerry World at full strength defensively and at least hypothetically should be able to continue to stuff the run and rush the passer. Of course, things could change for the Lions in Dallas, as Detroit has gone a staggering 0-16 on the road against winning teams in the Matthew Stafford era.
It’s anyone’s guess if Suh being activated again will change Detroit’s fortunes, but it certainly doesn’t hurt. The Lions looked to be dead in the water defensively a day ago, and now they once again have a realistic chance at upsetting the Cowboys in Dallas.
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