Ndamukong Suh Should Take a Page out of Al Davis' Book

Kazu McArthurContributor IIIFebruary 3, 2012

DETROIT, MI - NOVEMBER 24: Ndamukong Suh #90 of the Detroit Lions talks with the official during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Ford Field on November 24, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan. The Packers defeated the Lions 27-15.  (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
Leon Halip/Getty Images

You read the title correctly.

Ndamukong Suh should take a page out of Al Davis' book. There is no doubt that during his tenure, Al Davis was one of the most talked about owners in NFL history. Win or lose, the buck started and stopped with Davis. The media and general public constantly criticized Davis for his draft choices and personnel moves. However, he stuck with his guns and never apologized. Right or wrong, genius or dolt, he lived with his decisions. He felt no need to apologize or back down. Love him or hate him, you have to admit that Davis was one of a kind.

With the media abuzz following criticism of Suh by Hall of Fame candidate Warren Sapp, Suh finds himself in the midst of a crusade to repair his reputation. If one man knew anything about media criticism, it was Mr. Davis. Am I suggesting that Suh should be selfish and put himself before the team and organization? No. What I am suggesting is that he should be less worried about what people think of him and concentrate on realizing his potential. Stop trying to convince people with your words, and make a statement with your actions.If you're not a dirty player then prove it. 

Whenever a player of Suh's size, stature and ability sets foot in the NFL, he will automatically  be heavily scrutinized. His natural gifts coupled with his mind blowing rookie season all but set the stage for a sophomore season failure. Success is a double edged sword. When things are good, you are praised. When things aren't as good, the over-hyped, bust, dirty card comes out.

Case and point: Tony Romo. Let me first state that I am not a Tony Romo fan, and I say that with no disrespect intended. However, I will admit that there is no player in recent history that the media has been so hot and cold on. At the beginning of the year, analysts are calling him an overpaid playboy. At seasons end, he's dubbed  one of the best QBs in the NFL. Why? Because the media needs something to talk about. They get paid for making  players look like heroes or villains. Every achievement or failure will be scrutinized under a microscope and will be magnified to be something more than what it really is.

So, Mr. Suh, go out and do your job; which is to play football. Your job isn't to play nice in front of the cameras. Your job isn't to please the media. Your job is to play football. Your job is to stuff the run and get after the QB. Your job is to wreak havoc in the backfield each week.Your job is to contribute towards bringing the Lombardi Trophy to your team. Everything else is secondary. The media, like the stock market, changes everyday. They will paint it how they see it. Everyone has an opinion but  it's hard to argue the facts. To quote the late Mr. Davis, "just win baby."