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Ndamukong Suh: I definitely feel I’m a leader

Ndamukong Suh AP

Last week, Lions coach Jim Schwartz and linebacker Stephen Tulloch each shared their thoughts about how defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh fit as a leader on the team in 2013.

Tulloch thought Suh’s personality wasn’t that of a vocal leader who could rally the troops with his words while Schwartz thinks Suh has “embraced” the chance to be just that kind of leader for the Lions. Suh answered some questions about leadership on Wednesday in Detroit and his thoughts split the difference. He agrees that he’s on the quieter side, but doesn’t believe that makes him less of a leader for the team.

“I’m quiet in my own ways. When I feel the need to speak up, and it’s important, when I have something on my mind, I think anybody who knows me, and my coaches definitely know, I’m not afraid to speak up,” Suh said, via the Lions website. “Leadership is something that just comes along as it goes. You don’t want to force it. You don’t want to push yourself on being a leader because, usually, that becomes a rebellion-type thing. You let it come as it goes and just let it be natural. I definitely feel I’m a leader. I led a Nebraska team to some good games and some good championships. It’s been fun. I think I’ve had good work. My past has had some good leadership stuff.”

Suh has two years left on his current deal and a cap number of more than $21 million in 2014, which makes him a strong candidate for an extension after next season in order to clear up some cap space for the Lions in the coming years. If he proves to be the leader the team wants him to be, such an extension would be a much easier call to make. If he doesn’t and the Lions slump to another losing season, there could changes higher up on the leadership ladder that leave Suh’s Detroit future in less certain waters.

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29 Responses to “Ndamukong Suh: I definitely feel I’m a leader”
  1. giantsalldaysb42461 says: May 30, 2013 10:40 AM

    I don’t even know where to begin with this one lol. Ndamukong Suh: I definitely feel I’m a leader??? Really??? If you consider KICKING your opponent below the GROIN on National TV on Thanksgiving in front of Everyone Civil and you come out with this and say your a “LEADER???” Not to mention STOMPING on another player on the year before and you consider yourself a “LEADER” lol Am I missing something here??? I guess you can say You Lead by Example of having NO CLASS smh!

  2. doubleogator says: May 30, 2013 10:42 AM

    Sure, all leaders step on opponents body parts and kick their heads…lead by example right?

  3. mrposey5 says: May 30, 2013 10:45 AM

    When you’re as dominant as Suh is you don’t have to be a vocal leader. He commands respect from his play

  4. ozymandias121 says: May 30, 2013 10:52 AM

    When you say, “I definitely feel I’m a leader” it just reeks of insecurity.

  5. larrydavid7000 says: May 30, 2013 10:54 AM

    a leader of punks.!!!!

  6. noeffinway says: May 30, 2013 11:19 AM

    Oh man, let the jealous comments begin…hahaha
    Suh is the man! He is the beast! Requiring at least double teams on every play. You all wish you had him. And when you see what the Lions d-line does this year as it’s led by Suh and Fairley you are all going to pee yourself a bit!

  7. faulkn22 says: May 30, 2013 11:22 AM

    You know all of these haters would love to have Suh on their team. Sorry, its just a fact. He might be an ass sometimes, but he does have the respect of his teammates and he does carry his own weight in the scheme of things.

  8. vdogg says: May 30, 2013 11:23 AM

    Not so much.

    -Dietrich-Smith

  9. snaponrules says: May 30, 2013 11:26 AM

    He is a leader of the whole league, in cheap shots.

  10. gospitfires says: May 30, 2013 11:32 AM

    i realize that forum posters hold grudges longer than anybody and never forget a slight, but lets not forget Suh came in the player at 21, made some mistakes and hopefully with maturity can become the player everybody thought he was gonna be after his rookie year.

  11. packhawk04 says: May 30, 2013 11:34 AM

    I believe he is the leader of the lions, which is why they are a bunch of immature jerkoffs who cant get out of their own way.

  12. broccolilava says: May 30, 2013 11:35 AM

    Your coach wishes Suh was on their team.

  13. rayguyreturns says: May 30, 2013 11:40 AM

    Hitler was a leader, so was Mussolini, Pol Pot, and Saddam.
    Why not Suh?

  14. mkmoorebrowns says: May 30, 2013 11:41 AM

    I am a hater, of cheap shots and idiots.. i absolutely would not want this fool on my favorite team. And this is from a Cleveland fan! But if I was from Detroit, I would tell myself that our best player wasn’t the biggest piece of trash in the nfl too!

  15. jsrdc says: May 30, 2013 11:46 AM

    Yeah, Suh – you are a leader….

    You lead your team with DL penalties
    You lead the league in DL penalties.
    You lead the “cheap shot” category in the NFL.

    You are a leader. Congratulations.

    Faulkn22, I don’t wish this kid was on my team at all. He brings a cheap shot mentality that is obviously OK with his HC Schwartz. He disgraces the game and his fellow NFL players when he plays like that.

  16. jjackwagon says: May 30, 2013 11:48 AM

    True leaders don’t have to tell you they are the leader, you can tell by their actions.
    Suh can’t even spell leader.

  17. champ1118 says: May 30, 2013 11:57 AM

    Being a leader is like being a lady. If you have to go around telling people you are, then you aren’t.

  18. whooligun says: May 30, 2013 11:58 AM

    This whole leadership labelling thing is bizarre. Suh is a quiet guy who plays hard. If yelling and screaming were qualities of a great leader, then Schwartz wouldn’t have coached a 4 win team last year.

    As far as Suh, he has done some stupid things in the past, but they hardly seemed pre-meditated. He’s a guy who plays with his heart on his sleeve, and unfortunately in the past, has not been able to curb that raw power and emotion. If he is able to keep his powerful play clean all year, that sign of maturation and dedication can’t help but lead those around him naturally.

  19. 1historian says: May 30, 2013 12:11 PM

    Actions speak louder than words

  20. mvp43 says: May 30, 2013 12:15 PM

    He may be a leader in traffic violations as well as cheap shots.

  21. specialteamsposter says: May 30, 2013 12:16 PM

    Long time Lions fan here and as much as I hate to say it, I wish Suh and the lions PR team would shut up and stop trying to make him into a leader. He has to be one of the most entitled young players I’ve seen in a while.

    A few disappointing observations since he joined:

    1) He’s been outplayed by Fairley who is much smarter and consistently disruptive, when healthy.

    2) Up until the middle of last year was easily taken out of run plays. Gunther had to correct his technique vs. wham blocks.

    3) He celebrates meaningless plays for the camera like late hits/trying to rip off jake delhommes head in a preseason game. Justifies it by saying he’s trying to “send a message”

    4) Has a sister who goes to twitter to bash the city of Detroit.

    Shut up and start playing like Reggie White. Otherwise we would have been better off letting you go and keeping Sammie Lee Hill at a fraction of the price.

  22. tangysizzl says: May 30, 2013 12:23 PM

    Good luck trying to field a competitive team with 3 guys with cap numbers in the 15-20 million range. No Effin Way.

  23. noeffinway says: May 30, 2013 12:27 PM

    okeh all you ” cheap shot” whiners……….show me the tape! Put it on tape and show me the cheap shots. Why hasn’t some hotshot reporter put together the Suh cheap shot reel??? BECAUSE THERE ARE NO CHEAP SHOTS! Even the so-called “stomp” is a lame attempt by the haters to bash Suh. Lets talk about the silly schoolyard antics the pack was pulling that led to the stomp, which wasn’t exactly a stomp. Lets talk about the shoelace untying eh? Lets talk about the double teams that literally held Suh so tight that they lifted him and carried him 10 yds from the play – I DO have the tape on that!

    Suh is a monster of a DT that requires double teams on almost every play. AND you all simply cannot deal with the fact that he is not on your team…….bwaaahahahaha

  24. kenjan8482002 says: May 30, 2013 3:52 PM

    Most of Suh’s supposedly cheap shots seem to be unwise attempts by himself to showcase and build popularity which backfired. A little maturity and humility would go a long way for Suh and everybody else involved with the Lions. Even some teams that win super bowls have no trouble with that so the Lions should look at how to show some class as winners or when they lose. Even Schwartz the head coach could use some help in defining team leadership. The organization should bring in some outside help with leadership expertise unrelated to football such as our military or first res-ponders. This may be what’s lacking on this team with so much talent and yet hasn’t learned how to win and be successful.

  25. hendeeze says: May 30, 2013 9:00 PM

    Leader for what? Stomp the musical?

    Lionsdraftguy would be in the front row cheering his favorite “classy” player!

  26. oimakkamio says: May 31, 2013 2:43 PM

    I’ll take the comments of Mean Joe Green and how he loves the way Suh plays over a bunch of wanna be GM’s and trolls sitting behind a monitor any day. Suh is a beast and ANY team and fanbase would love to have him. He’s only going to get better….love him or hate him he’s here for a long long time.

  27. koolaidsgonebad says: May 31, 2013 3:28 PM

    Ok, I can understand busting on someone when “the stomp” came out, but really to hold on to it is weak. Heat of the moment action is better than a DUI, domestic assault, drugs, etc. Everyone is so hard on him, but true NFL criminals are getting off scott free. (haters gonna hate) So the guy has had some issues with his driving. But he is a force to be reckoned with and still a great player even if he over-penetrates and gives up a running lane. His job is to disrupt QBs!!! Secondly for everyone to blindly say this guy is classless is out of line. (haters gonna hate) A couple on field issues or poor driving should not determine this man’s overall character. I saw more pushing, shoving and kicking in the NBA playoffs over the past 2 weeks. Please take a look at what Suh has done off of the field: donations to Nebraska engineering school ($2.6 Million), a HS team in Detroit had their equipment stolen and he helped replace it, and he just gave $250K to his HS in Oregon. AND in 2011 he was named AMERICA’S most charitable athlete… look it up it was on Profootballtalk.

  28. faulkn22 says: Jun 2, 2013 7:17 AM

    3 penalties all last season. I stand by what I said, you would all love to have him :) But of course, you can’t.

  29. erikd55 says: Jun 3, 2013 12:30 PM

    See this is what i am talking about. Suh undoubtedly made some huge mistakes last season where his integrity as a clean player was brought into question. Since then he has been labled as a dirty player. (some say rightfully so) How much time must pass between incidents or after a “dirty play” to become a clean player? 1 season? 1 year? 1 career? Suh paid his time in the form of his suspensions and fines. If the league thought he shouldnt play anymore then he would not be a player in the NFL. YEP you are right, he made a stomping gesture at a players arm. I saw it, you saw it, you would think he took an axe to someones face from the reaction it recieved. I laugh my ass off every time i see it. (it was stupid for him to do, i agree) BUT COME ON. Anyone here who has played football KNOWS the trenches (offensive line) are one of the dirties, most foul places to be. Players turn ankles, pinch, spit, kick, etc. We dont even see the half of what happens under a pile. I have personally been on the receiving end of all of that on the bottom of a pile. He was penalized and rightfully so, suspended and fined. But GIVE THE GUY A BREAK. He was asked if he thought he could lead the team. What would you say? “no?” He is trying to step up and maybe reclaim his name. If you ask me he was screwed when they asked the question. He says yes, they laugh cuz he is a “dirty player.” He says no. they laugh cuz he backed down from a challenge. Had he been a more established player in the league it would have been swept under the rug. That is a fact. Also, he has done his fair share for the rest of the community, in donating more money to charity then any one of his critics would ever make in a life time. Also he was named “Americas most charitble Athlete.” Get off his jock.

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