Detroit Lions Roster Bubble: Defensive Tackle

7 of 7

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Ndamukong Suh, 1st round pick out of Nebraska in 2010
2014 stats:  16 Games, 53 tackles, 8.5 sack
Career Stats:  78 Games, 180 tackles, 36 sacks, 2 FF

In some parallel universe, we’d never have to talk about Ndamukong Suh being on the Detroit Lions roster bubble.  If the team never had to restructure contracts due to the ridiculous pre-CBA rookie structure, his presence on the 2015 Detroit Lions would be a matter of fact, period.  As it is, his contracts were manipulated several times, resulting in being ultimately voided after the super bowl.  This leaves almost 10 million in cap cost in 2015 regardless of where Suh plays and an insane 26 million franchise tag number.

Players like Suh come around once in a lifetime, and while it’s easy to say that they must re-sign him while sitting at our computers at home, the business side of the NFL is never that easy.  There is a very real possibility that Suh is not a Lion in 2015, and there is no amount of complaining or #hashtagging that can change that.

I’ve already taken a look at some of the difficult draft choices the Lions face with Suh’s situation, but he affects free agency as well.  That a player can affect not only his own contract, but the contracts of other players on the team (restructures are likely to retain him) and the potential contracts of free agents obtained in 2015 is a testament to the impact Ndamukong Suh has had in Detroit.

Chances of returning?

With team President Tom Lewand’s recent comments and the general optimism many of you feel, I’m sure you want to give me some sort of high number here.  Likewise, some of you had Suh as leaving before the 2014 season even started, so you probably expect a big fat zero.  As it is, Suh’s chances of returning to Detroit remain right where they’ve always been, hovering just over 50%.  I say just over not because I’m optimistic, but only because the Detroit Lions get first crack at signing him prior to the free agency period.

So what do you think, folks?  Who stays and who goes for the 2015 Detroit Lions defensive tackle corps?  Let us know in the comments.

Next: Detroit Lions 2015 Draft Watch Combine Preview

More from SideLion Report