ORLANDO — Although he has long been considered one of the best at his position, Ndamukong Suh has now been allowed to depart from two NFL teams, including the Dolphins, and he just signed with the Los Angeles Rams, but for just one year.
Coach Sean McVay said Tuesday at the annual NFL meetings that the fact Suh was not handed a multiyear contract was an approach the Rams wanted to take — but also what Suh, 31, and his agent preferred.
“We both felt good about, with the one-year deal, I think if he’s able to do the things that we expect and I think that he anticipates as well, this is something that we hope to extend past that one year,” McVay said. “But I think in this league you take it one year at a time. We felt it was the best for both sides.”
Suh signed for $14 million, or $3 million less than what he was to make had the Dolphins not released him in a cap-related move.
The Rams obviously are adding one of the best defensive tackles in the league.
They’re also adding a puzzle McVay must solve: how to maximize Suh’s skills while also keeping Aaron Donald and Michael Brockers happy on the interior line, because none of the three are known for taking many breathers on Sundays.
All three ranked among the NFL’s top 18 in snap counts for 2017. Suh’s 877 snaps with the Dolphins were the seventh-most among defensive tackles. Donald was 10th at 856 and Brockers 18th at 751.
“As we continue to kind of get through this offseason, we’ll figure out our personnel and exactly what’s the best way to get these guys in good spots,” McVay said. “I think that’ll naturally sort itself out. We are a team that believes in, especially up front, keeping our guys as fresh as possible. But if they demonstrate they have the ability to go — and certainly we know Ndamukong is going to be one of our better players and if he shows that based on the way he takes care of himself and his ability to sustain from Play 1 to 65 — if he’s feeling fresh, we’re certainly not going to take him off the field.”
It’s only March, so McVay isn’t buying into the notion that he has a dream team of defensive tackles, because such plans rarely pan out. Remember when the Dolphins were excited about pairing Suh and Cameron Wake on the same line?
“This league is too good,” McVay said. “You make expectations and before you know it, you’re sitting here wondering, ‘Where am I?’ ”
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