Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
Can the Detroit Lions Trade/Cut Ndamukong Suh?
It’s the most popular name to throw out in trade. Ndamukong Suh and the Detroit Lions have reached an impasse in their contract negotiations and the team broke off contact. Since then, fans have been unrelenting in their belief that Suh just doesn’t want to be in Detroit. If the Detroit Lions trade their marquee defensive player.
Further pushing this narrative is Jason Fitzgerald of Over the Cap addressing it directly as the “Best Option“. It’s been the subject of debate at NFL Network, and despite the team’s attempt to quell such rumors by stating they’d already declined trade and weren’t seeking others, it’s still here. In the last year of his contract, a Suh trade is not only unlikely, it’s practically impossible.
Teams just don’t trade for players in the final year of their deal, even less likely for one looking for a similar contract to the record setting deal JJ Watt just signed. Assuming the Detroit Lions were able to find a trade partner, we can look at their own financial ramifications, which aren’t pretty. According to Over the Cap, a Detroit Lions trade with Ndamukong Suh would cost more than it would to simply cut him.
The Lions would only save less than $3 million in cap space to trade the all pro defensive tackle. As noted by Spotrac, Suh’s contract voids after the Super Bowl, so the 2014 season is basically the last year in his deal that originally ran through 2015.
Like Over the Cap, Spotrac also addressed Suh’s contract situation, though more as a point of comparison to project a potential contract. Another “option” for the Lions is to franchise Ndamukong Suh. I’m just going to leave the following tweet from Spotrac about that one for your consideration.
"If the #Lions franchise tag Ndamukong Suh in 2015, he’ll count a projected $36.6M against their cap ($26.87M tag + $9.7M in dead cap) — Spotrac (@spotrac)"