Defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh returned to the Detroit Lions this week for the team's first set of OTAs. Previously, he was working out on his own, but he was back for the first practice on Tuesday, and he spoke to the media following Wednesday's practice. This allowed him to explain his absence earlier in the offseason, and he made it clear that his contract situation had nothing to do with it.
Suh said he prefers to go home and train because "he's dialed into that program." It had nothing to do with his contract.— Tim Twentyman (@ttwentyman) May 21, 2014
Speaking of his contract, Suh also made it clear that his desire is still for a long-term deal with the Lions.
Suh reiterated that he wants to be a #Lion long term. Said his focus is on practice and not contract.— Tim Twentyman (@ttwentyman) May 21, 2014
Suh didn't have much to say about why he switched agents, what exactly his relationship is with Roc Nation Sports or anything else related to his contract. He did, however, create a bit of a stir when he mentioned that he could have gone somewhere other than Detroit in the draft back in 2010. It's not clear if he was suggesting that he could have pulled an Eli Manning and demanded a trade or something along the lines of that, but this is what Suh said:
Here's Suh's quote: "Probably a lot of you guys don’t know, I could have gone elsewhere when I was drafted. ...— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) May 21, 2014
Suh continued: "Had that decision in my hands. I chose not to take it because that's just the way I saw it."— Dave Birkett (@davebirkett) May 21, 2014
Suh: "You could drop down in the draft, you can move up in the draft, people could come get you. There are a lot of things that happen."— Josh Katzenstein (@jkatzenstein) May 21, 2014
I'm not exactly sure how the decision was in his hands, but I think Suh's point was that he was okay with going to Detroit back in 2010 and he would like to stay in Detroit going forward. Granted, that could just be him saying the right things, and only time will tell if that's truly his desire. In the short term, though, what's really notable here is that Suh is back with the team, under contract for 2014 and in "impeccable" shape. Yes, his long-term future is also important, but simply for 2014, Suh appears to be ready for another All-Pro type of season.