The Bucs bolstered their defensive line with a splash by agreeing to terms on a one-year deal with veteran defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, Thursday. Widely regarded as the best available free agent, Suh will be entering his 10th season in the NFL and is coming off a productive year while with the Los Angeles Rams in 2018.
Suh was used a lot on the interior at nose tackle of a defensive line that included Aaron Donald in Los Angeles' 3-4 system last year. A natural and productive disruptor, he totaled 59 combined tackles, 4.5 sacks, 19 quarterback hits and even four passes defensed. He provided an experienced defensive anchor to a relatively young Rams team during his one-year tenure before becoming a free agent this offseason.
Prior to Los Angeles, Suh spent three years in Miami with the Dolphins after signing what was the most lucrative deal for a defensive player in NFL history in 2015. As a Dolphin, he registered 15.5 sacks, 181 tackles, 49 quarterback hits and 13 passes broken up and garnered a Pro Bowl selection in 2016. The bulk of his career came with Detroit, where he spent five seasons with the Lions after they drafted him second overall in the 2010 NFL Draft. Former Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy was taken that year as well, just a pick behind Suh, at third overall out of Oklahoma.
Suh was an immediate double-digit sack player for the Lions as a rookie, recording 10.0 and combining for 65 tackles, 13 of which were for loss. During his five years in Detroit, Suh was named an All-Pro and selected to the Pro Bowl three times, including his rookie season where he also won 2010 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year.
His 107 career tackles for loss currently rank ninth among all active players and he's appeared on the NFL Top 100 list every season since entering the league.
View photos of DT Ndamukong Suh from his career so far.
A native of Portland, Oregon, Suh attended the University of Nebraska from 2005 to 2009. In his last season for the Cornhuskers as a senior, Suh was named AP College Football Player of the Year, won the Bill Willis Trophy, the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, the Chuck Bednarik Award, the Lombardi Award and Outland Trophy, in addition to consensus First-Team All-America honors. He was also a Heisman Trophy finalist.
It was just a few days ago that Buccaneers Head Coach Bruce Arians said the team's roster was still a long way away from resembling the final product for the 2019 season. The addition of Suh comes immediately after the team mutually agreed to part ways with defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who had spent the previous nine seasons in Tampa Bay. It also follows news that veteran pass rusher Jason Pierre-Paul will likely miss significant time in the 2019 season due to a neck injury suffered in a car accident this offseason.