The Miami Dolphins have made a huge addition to their defense as the team and free agent Ndamukong Suh have agreed on a contract. Suh has been the best player at his position since entering the league as the 2nd overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft.
In five seasons with the Detroit Lions, Suh has racked up 239 tackles, 36.0 sacks, 15 passes defended and one interception. He also played a big role in the Lions top-ranked run defense in 2014, an area that the Dolphins desperately need help after surrendering a ridiculous amount of rushing yards during the final two months of the season.
While Suh has been considered one of the dirtiest players in the league, something that has been voted on by his peers in the past, he is a major league game-changer that instantly makes Miami’s defense a force to be reckoned with. There are plenty of reasons why adding Suh is a great move for the Dolphins, and here are the top positives to signing the 28-year-old 4-time Pro Bowler.
It’s no coincidence that the Detroit Lions had the best run defense in the NFL last year, with Suh anchoring the effort. It’s also no coincidence that the Dolphins made Suh their highest priority in free agency after suffering through the final months of the 2014 season with arguably the worst run defense in the league. Miami was in the driver’s seat and appeared poised to make the playoffs for the first time since 2008 but their sudden and shocking inability to stop the run played a huge part in their latest December demise. Suh fixes that problem instantly, taking a large amount of pressure off of Miami’s linebacking unit that is also in need of a makeover.
Makes Players Around Him Better
Miami’s defense has become known for its premiere edge pass rushers, Cameron Wake and Olivier Vernon. Both have been terrors for opposing offensive lines to block, and they often find themselves covered by a double team. That’s not going to happen anymore with Suh in the mix. Suh demands a double team on almost every down, instantly making the players around him better and making their assignments much easier to handle.
Takes Pressure Off The Offense
The arrival of Suh in Miami means that the Dolphins defense instantly gets better. While the team finished 2014 with the 12th ranked defense in the NFL, Miami’s run defense was near the bottom of the league at 24th. Considering that the run defense really fell apart in the final two months of the season, that number would’ve been a lot worse had their late-season woes been spread out over the entire year. With the new Dolphins defense being more reliable and feared, it takes a lot of pressure off of the improving Miami offense led by quarterback Ryan Tannehill. The offense took some big steps forward last season and should continue to trend upward, which bodes well for the Dolphins’ playoff hopes as a high-scoring offense and a shut-down defense usually leads to a lot of wins.
Suh Is A Feared “Team” Guy
One thing that has become common knowledge about Suh is that he is a major ‘team’ guy. It’s to the point where he won’t talk to players on opposing teams before, during or after games. You’ve heard the phrase ‘He’s the kind of player you hate unless he’s on your team’ and that certainly applies to Suh. He gives the Dolphins a fierce, feared face to their defense and is someone that teammates can rally around.
Follow David on Twitter (@DavidDwork)