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Posted Dec. 7, 2009
"Suh" is Elite
Ndamukong Suh was amazing against Texas in the Big XII Championship, but if you follow the NFL Draft and top college prospects all year long, then his performance wasn't a big shock to you.
However, the true saying goes, "Big players make big plays in big games."
Suh made a lot of big plays in a big game, and combined with his great talent, ability and intangibles, that makes him a great player.
Nebraska's stud defensive tackle was absolutely dominant against Texas. I lost track of how many opposing linemen he literally threw to the ground. His upper and lower body strength is on an elite level. He has ridiculously strong hands, and he uses his legs to drive into his opponents. Often times, Texas tried to double team, but to no avail; they couldn't stop Suh.
Suh single-handedly made Colt McCoy's life a living nightmare and he almost crushed the dreams of the state of Texas, had kicker Hunter Lawrence missed the game-winning field goal.
Suh isn't a perfect prospect. He lacks a pass rush repertoire and while he has very good athleticism, he isn't Warren Sapp. Suh gets by on his great technique, strength and tenacity in college, but in the NFL, guards and centers are 20-30 pounds heavier, they are much stronger than Big XII linemen, they player with better technique, they are smarter, and they are mentally tougher.
I'm not saying Suh won't be a great player in the NFL. I expect him to be great. I'm just saying Suh won't be as dominant because that's impossible.
In terms of how high Suh can go, if the Tampa Bay Buccaneers get the No. 1 pick and don't trade down, I expect them to take him. However, I think Cleveland and St. Louis would be making big mistakes in passing up on a franchise quarterback like Jimmy Clausen or Jake Locker. Sure, Suh is a great player, but great defensive tackles only get you so far. If you don't have a winning quarterback, you will struggle to put up 8-plus wins a season consistently.
There is no doubt that Ndamukong Suh embodies the elite grade. He had an outstanding college career and it will be fun to see where he ultimately lands on Draft Day.