One of the biggest grievances people seemed to have with Ndamukong Suh was his lack of remorse, at least according to the comment section in my article from yesterday. Well, Suh took to his Facebook page (usually reserved for Subway Hunt Clues, or something) to deliver this:
In the past few hours, I have had time to reflect on yesterday’s game and I want to sincerely apologize for letting my teammates down, the organization, and especially to my fans who look to me for positive inspiration.
Playing professional sports is not a game. It is a profession with great responsibility, and where performance on and off the field should never be compromised. It requires a calm and determined demeanor, which cannot be derailed by the game, referee calls, fans or other players.
I want to reiterate my commitment to working to become a better player, and professional—on and off the field. My reaction on Thursday was unacceptable. I made a mistake, and have learned from it. I hope to direct the focus back to the task at hand — by winning.
The obvious question from all this in whether it is sincere or not, because this was not delivered face-to-face via press conference. Now, we know press conference apologies are not the most sincere (Tiger Woods did something once), but they are better than typing somewhat anonymous messages that may not have even been written by the person who did anything wrong.
As ESPN’s Kevin Seifert notes: “If Suh truly understands he finally obliterated the line between aggressive and dirty, we'll never see him approach it again”. He probably will approach it again, and he will probably approach it within three games. He’s never going to change his style of play.
Personally, I like that. I like someone who plays as hard as Suh, and thinks that the Thanksgiving incident was perhaps blown out of proportion—like people exaggerating to a Haynesworthian degree, which is absurd. But Suh, whether he wrote this message or not, has put himself out there.
If he karate chops Jay Cutler again, people will look back on this message and believe it to not be sincere. If he had apologized—sincere or not—right after the game, maybe people would be a little more forgiving in the future. But the fact that it took him this long to do the thing that everyone had wanted him to do in the first place, will likely spell trouble if he ever does anything similar again.