Can you imagine defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh wearing a New Orleans Saints uniform during the 2013 NFL season?
Last week when the Examiner published Step #2 of my six-step plan to make the Detroit Lions a perennial playoff contender, the recommendation was to sign quarterback Matthew Stafford to a long-term contract and trade Suh.
There was no indication of who would want Suh. But having watched the post-season house cleanings by different owners and this weekend’s NFL playoffs, I now have some theories and the most attractive one is trading Suh to the New Orleans Saints for the No. 15 pick in the 1st round and another pick later in the NFL draft
Why does this deal make sense?
Defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh is exactly what the New Orleans Saints need to get back into the playoffs. Like the Lions, it comes as no surprise that the Saints’ weakness is their defense and they could trade for a starter on the defensive line with three years of NFL experience rather than gambling on their No. 15 pick.
The change in scenery, the recent success of New Orleans franchise and the head coaching style of Sean Payton will probably pay big dividends for Suh, the Saints and their fans. It certainly can bring some fresh energy to the team.
Who else would be interested in Suh?
There are other NFL teams who desperately need a quality defensive tackle, but the best candidates are the franchises that feel they can be a playoff team for many years to come by adding one pivotal player to their roster. Besides the Saints, you can imagine how much better Pittsburgh, Seattle or Denver would be with Suh on their defensive line.
Tennessee (with the No. 10 pick in the draft) and Carolina (No. 14) would be ideal trade partners for the Lions, but they have more pressing needs. The Titans fired their chief operating officer and the Panthers sacked their general manager. With critical management positions to be filled, trading for a defensive tackle is a lower priority on their franchise checklists.
“Show me the money!”
Of course, all of this trade speculation is meaningless if no one can afford to make the deal. New Orleans may not have the financial leverage to acquire Suh.
All of these teams have to operate at or under the anticipated $121 salary cap and it is very complicated, mind-boggling task. It is why I greatly admire the work of the New England Patriots and Green Bay Packers’ management teams. They have consistently built Super Bowl contenders around a superstar quarterback and a strong supporting cast of all-star role players.
Feel free to "Comment", tweet me or send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts about trading Suh to the Saints.