Terrell Suggs spent 16 years as a core member of the Baltimore Ravens as an outside linebacker, certainly one of the greatest players in the history of the franchise, and perhaps a future Hall of Famer to boot. He continues to play and produce at a quality level, only, for the first time in his professional career, he’s doing it in another jersey.
Suggs was just one of a number of notable players who were hitting unrestricted free agency for the Ravens last year, and many of them elected to sign elsewhere. That included himself, signing with the Arizona Cardinals, even though the Ravens had made a strong late push to re-sign him.
“I just felt it was time”, he told Ravens beat writers earlier this week as he prepares to enter M&T Bank Stadium for the first time ever as a visiting player. Suggs played his college football at Arizona State, and he resides in Arizona during the offseason, so he is in actuality staying close to home.
“I don’t know what to expect”, he said, about waking into the stadium this weekend. “I’m going to do my best to enjoy it – the good, the bad and the ugly. It’s going to be kind of weird for all of us”. It certainly will be weird playing against a team that you played for for 16 years. I don’t imagine that that circumstance has arisen all too often over the course of NFL history.
In his first game for the Cardinals, he put up five tackles and recorded two sacks, producing a fumble along the way, so he’s off to a good start in showing that he can continue to be an effective player at his position even though he is set to turn 37 years old in a little under a month’s time. One of those sacks was a big one in overtime against the Detroit Lions.
“I don’t know what kind of reception, I don’t know how I’m going to feel”, Suggs expanded in talking about any sort of expectations that he might have about returning to Baltimore as an enemy. “This is a very unique situation for me. This is something that in 17 years I’ve never experienced”.
Whenever it comes to Suggs, I always find myself playing the what-if game. What if the Pittsburgh Steelers had drafted him? While he is one of the most hated players by Steelers fans of this era, I do think he’s also one of the most respected in terms of his on-field ability. I tend to think that he would make a great Steeler.