Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh has 100,000 reasons to change his style of play.
None of them are enough motivation to modify what he does on game day.
Suh was fined $100,000 by the NFL on Tuesday for an illegal block he delivered to Minnesota Vikings center John Sullivan during an interception return in Week 1. It marked the sixth fine of Suh’s career.
While that would seem like motivation for Suh to act differently, he let members of the media know that will not happen during an interview on Wednesday, via NFL.com.
“I don’t change,” Suh said. “I’m going to always play tough, hard, that’s the way I was brought up at Nebraska, where I really learned football from the (Bo) Pelini and that staff and continue to play hard, play blue-collar football.”
Suh added that he planned to appeal the fine.
Most people do not have a problem with Suh playing hard, but it’s the extra-curricular activities many NFL observers have an issue with. New Orleans Saints tight end Benjamin Watson said, “enough is enough” when asked about Suh’s actions during a recent interview.
Lions coach Jim Schwartz was asked if Suh needed to adapt to the NFL’s message about tackling, but was not concerned during Wednesday’s media conference.
“I think he’s adapted from a couple years ago,” Schwartz said. “This was an incident that got on the radar because of what happened in his past. I think that he needs to continue to play within and that’s something he’s already working hard to do.”
Suh’s reputation might be the reason he was proven innocent during a recent police investigation.
According to Detroit Free Press reporter Dave Birkett, Suh was investigated and cleared last month by police in Birmingham, Mich. after he allegedly flashed a pellet gun at a cable repairman. Spencer Ferrell, 22, called police on Aug. 16 after 9 p.m. after Detroit’s exhibition loss to the Cleveland Browns. He alleged that Suh threatened him with a gun while he was working on a utility pole in the athlete’s backyard.
However, Suh and his sister, Ngum, cooperated with police investigators. After police officers watched the surveillance tape of that evening – Suh and his sister encouraged law enforcement officials to view it – the tape showed Ferrell was never threatened.
Suh may have been exonerated off the field, but critics remain steadfast he is guilty of foul play when on it.