Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh was fined $30,000 by the NFL on Wednesday, but says he didn't kick Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub on purpose.
That's why Suh insisted he doesn't need to apologize to Schaub. Suh spoke to reporters Wednesday for the first time since his left cleat connected with Schaub's groin area in Detroit's overtime loss to Houston last Thursday. The league didn't suspend him because it couldn't reach a judgment on his intent.
"I was dragged to the ground," said Suh. "A lot of things happen to me. It's part of the game. It's a crazy play, it's one that unfortunately happened. I didn't even realize it until the end of the game when I see my Twitter feed, I see my friends telling me about it. Other than that, I can't do much more about it. I was being dragged to the ground and my foot inadvertently hit the man. But it's over with and I am moving forward and getting ready to play the Colts."
Suh's reputation, though, has taken another hit. The NFL suspended the former Husker for two games last season after he stomped on Green Bay's Evan Dietrich-Smith in a Thanksgiving Day game. Suh said he was sorry to Dietrich-Smith.
"I think I'm always going to be punished some form or fashion for last Thanksgiving," Suh said. "I apologized for it and I will continue to apologize for it. It's something that happened, a mistake that I made, I'm living up to it and I'll continue to move past it. Some people may not, some people will and some people will teeter-totter back and forth depending on whatever the situation is."
Suh has been fined in previous seasons for roughing up quarterbacks including Cincinnati's Andy Dalton, Chicago's Jay Cutler and Cleveland's Jake Delhomme.
Schaub refused to talk about the play or Suh after last week's game and declined to say much about it or him again after Wednesday's practice.
Cutler did choose to chime in on the 6-foot-4, 307-pound Suh, who has ferociously knocked him down multiple times and once finished off a tackle by twisting and ripping his helmet off. "It seems like he's always in this predicament every five, six, seven games. You have to be aware of him when he's playing football. He's a tough competitor. He plays hard. Sometimes, he goes overboard."
Delhomme agreed. In a preseason game two years ago, Suh grabbed Delhomme's face mask, twisted it, wrapped his arms around his helmet and slammed him to the ground. "What he did to me as a rookie and how he hit Cutler hard earlier this year were just aggressive plays," Delhomme told The Associated Press in a telephone interview, adding that he's likely going to stay retired in Louisiana. "But there's no place in the game for kicking Schaubie like he did or stomping that guy last year on Thanksgiving."
Meanwhile, a traffic citation issued to Suh in suburban Detroit will stand. Lathrup Village Police Chief William Armstrong said Tuesday he wasn't sure the November 15th ticket for driving without due care and caution would hold up after having watched video footage of Suh's driving that day.
But after consulting with the city attorney, Armstrong said Wednesday the decision was made to go forward and have Suh "either pay the fine or fight the ticket." An officer wrote up Suh after seeing the third-year pro driving fast and passing cars from the right lane.
Suh has been sued for $1 million by a woman who claims she was injured when Suh was in a car crash last December in Portland, Oregon.