The Jaguars have the most salary cap room in the NFL going into free agency. With many holes to fill, and an enormous of amount of money to spend, the Jaguars look to be major players in free agency. The most highly coveted free agent of the 2015 class is Ndamukong Suh.
Suh is one of the top defensive players in the whole league and arguably the best defensive tackle. He has dealt with his fair share of controversy throughout his career. He has been labeled as a “dirty” player, by some. Needless to say, Suh’s landing spot is a hot topic in NFL circles. The Lions chose not to place the franchise tag on him, which means he will likely be hitting the open market on March 10th when free agency officially begins.
Shad Khan and his Jacksonville Jaguars are going to be spending a lot of money this free agency period, and they should push hard to attain the All Pro defensive tackle. Despite a seemingly endless supply of money, and the need for elite players, many Jaguars fans do not want him in Jacksonville, because he is a “dirty” player. One fan who will remain nameless went so far as to say:
“Let's just sell our souls for a wild card while we're at it. Maybe we can get Rah Rice (assuming he means Ray Rice) for cheap and catch Aaron Hernandez when he gets parole.“
Accusing Suh of being a “dirty” player is one thing, but comparing him to Ray Rice, who knocked his fiancee out cold, or to Aaron Hernandez, who is on trial for murder, is entirely different. There have been many players throughout sports history who have been labeled as “dirty” players, and many of them, were beloved by their fans. Bill Laimbeer, Bruce Bowen, and the Jaguars own Tony Boselli, have all been accused of being “dirty” players, but all three of them were great players, teammates, and community leaders. Suh has made some bone headed mistakes, and committed a lot of silly penalties throughout his career, but he helps his team win games. Some fans think that Suh is a “bad” person, but off the field he is actually quite philanthropic. Suh being labeled as a “dirty” player, should not be a concern for the Jaguars.
Another popular angle on why Suh shouldn’t come to Jax is that he is bad for the locker room, and team mates don’t like him. This truth is quite the contrary. James Ihedigbo, in an interview with Rob Beard of The Detroit News, had this to say about his controversial team mate:
"I want him back. He's such a key part to everything we do that we hope that we can get him back, It's the nature of the business, so it's really out of my hands and what I think really doesn't matter.”
Suh is beloved by his teammates and is a force on the field. The Jaguars have more than enough money to acquire Suh, he is is actually liked by his teammates, and he’s a good dude off the field. So, why on earth wouldn't the Jaguars and their fans want him? Detractors of the move from a football standpoint claim that Suh wouldn't really help the Jags, because they are “loaded” at defensive tackle. If having two DT’s coming off severe leg injuries is “loaded” then, yeah, sure, The Jaguars are loaded at defensive tackle. The Jaguars best two DT’s, Sen’ Derrick Marks and Roy Miller, will be battling back from leg injuries. They both had very good seasons last year, which leads people to think that the Jaguars are fine at DT, but are they really? For starters, there is no guarantee that either player will return to form. Miller is more a run stuffer, so he does not need great quickness, or explosion, however, Marks does use explosive moves to beat offensive lineman; this explosiveness, likely will not return immediately and he may never be the same. The second, more important point, regarding this issue is that even with Marks and Miller playing most of last year the Jaguars ranked 27th in yards allowed per game on the ground. The Lions, Suh’s Current team, were the best team in the NFL last year against the run, giving up only 69.3 rush yards per game. Suh would immediately make the Jaguars run defense better, and would make the entire defensive line more explosive. To boot, he would be the only elite player on the Jaguars current roster. The Jaguars should absolutely try to acquire the high priced free agent, if he becomes available.
SO DUVAL, What say you??
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