Aug. 17--Well played, Ndamukong Suh.
The Miami Dolphins defensive tackle is well aware of the "dirty" reputation he's built up over the years, especially while playing for the Detroit Lions from 2010-14.
So much so that he's now part of a new Foot Locker commercial with NBA star DeMarcus Cousins who, like Suh, considers himself "misunderstood" based on his reputation.
"With guys like you me, it's like our reputation precedes us," Suh tells Cousins in the commercial while walking Foot Locker bags out to their car. "Once people get a certain impression, that's it."
During their conversation, Cousins "inadvertently" kicks a woman's groceries on the ground and then a man's crutch, knocking him over. Suh then steps on the man's cast -- which seems to be a reference to a few of his controversies as a Lion.
The whole commercial is pretty amusing -- and also an exercise in self-awareness by both Suh and Cousins.
Suh was a force on the Lions' defensive line during his five seasons with the team, eventually becoming the best defensive tackle in the NFL, but it also came with a suspension, hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines and a reputation that made him a frequent target in the eyes of NFL officials.
On Thanksgiving 2011, Suh was ejected for stomping on Green Bay Packers offensive lineman Evan Dietrich-Smith. Then in 2014, Suh was criticized for stepping on Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers' calf, though it went unnoticed in the game by officials and no flag was thrown.
Suh left for Miami in the 2015 off-season after the Lions failed to extend his contract.
Meanwhile, Cousins is a 3-time NBA All-Star center and has developed into one of the best big men in the league, but he's butted heads numerous times with his coach (Paul Westphal, then George Karl) while he was with the Sacramento Kings and drew criticism at times for his technical fouls. He now plays for the New Orleans Pelicans.
Contact Brian Manzullo: firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter@BrianManzullo.
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