In the same week that Barack Obama was re-elected President of the United States, Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh has been re-elected to a slightly less prestigious title.
For the second consecutive year, Suh came in first place in a Sporting News poll asking NFL players to name the dirtiest player in the league. Last year the poll reached 111 players and Suh got 36 votes, while this year the poll included 103 players and Suh got 32 votes. So Suh has consistently been named the dirtiest player in the league by a little more than 30 percent of his fellow players.
Suh was followed by Dolphins guard Richie Incognito, who received 19 votes. Last year Incognito came in sixth place in the “dirtiest player” polling, so he’s moving up the rankings, perhaps bolstered by highly publicized comments from the Texans early this season.
Rams cornerback Cortland Finnegan, who aspires to be the dirtiest player in the NFL, will have to settle for third-dirtiest for the second consecutive year: Finnegan came in third place, same as last year, although his vote total increased from eight to 14, so he’s moving in the right direction toward realizing his aspirations of being known as the league’s dirtiest player.
Steelers linebacker James Harrison, who came in second place last year, has fallen to fourth place this year. Harrison hasn’t been 100 percent this season because of a knee injury, so he’s been slowed down in his efforts to deliver brutal hits to opposing quarterbacks.
Titans offensive tackle David Stewart, who like Incognito was accused by the Texans of dirty play, came in fifth place in this year’s voting. Stewart didn’t place in last year’s poll.
The voting was rounded out by Eagles defensive end Jason Babin and Steelers safety Ryan Mundy, who got two votes apiece, and 12 players who each received one vote. All of those players can keep up their dirty play if they want to rise in the rankings next year. But it’ll be tough to top Suh.