A player that’s been connected to the Las Vegas Raiders all offseason is Ndamukong Suh. Needless to say, some people have grown weary of this, mostly because, after some teasing, things have been relatively quiet on that front. The team itself was never reported to have an interest in Suh; rather, things took off after Suh’s appearance on ESPN. However, one free agent seems to think that he’s better than Suh. If that’s the case, should the Raiders pursue him, or in this case, bring him back?
Is Darius Philon better than Ndamukong Suh at this point in their careers?
Darius Philon joined the Raiders last year after starting his career with the Los Angeles Chargers. The six-foot-one, 286-pound defensive tackle quickly made his presence known, racking up two sacks while also impacting run defense. Regrettably, Philon was lost before the playoffs, a loss that was felt against the Cincinnati Bengals. Philon has found himself unsigned as the offseason gave way to training camp and now the preseason. As for the Raiders, they got some good news today with Johnathan Hankins and Bilal Nichols coming back to practice. By all intents and purposes, those two will be the starting defensive tackles. Nevertheless, many fans feel that Suh would be a clear and much-needed upgrade going into a season with heavy expectations.
Philon, on the other hand, thinks he’d be the better option.
One fan on Twitter responded to a recent piece by the Raider Ramble in which we noted that the case for Suh was growing. To be fair, this was prior to Hankins and Nichols returning, but still. One reader commented that Philon was a “younger and better version” of Suh. Fans comment all the time, but a player’s opinion is different. It certainly carries more weight. Philon did just that, shooting down another person’s response to that statement. The former Raider made it clear to their reply of “definitely not better, but for sure younger,” with a rather emphatic response.
That’s yo opinion I know I am https://t.co/xT8xXcJHLh
— ♠️♠️Darius Philon♠️♠️ (@dukephilon_07) August 16, 2022
Who’s the better option?
In terms of name recognition and accomplishments, it’s not even close, whether you like Suh or not. He’s got the stats, hardware, and, in many ways, his own brand. However, if you’re strictly looking at numbers from 2021, Suh doesn’t exactly blow him away. Philon is certainly younger, by a lot, nearly a seven-year difference.
On the other hand, their numbers aren’t too far apart. For example, Philon had two sacks and five tackles for a loss in 11 games played. In total, Suh totaled six tackles and seven tackles for a loss, yet that took 17 games to accomplish. Suh also has playoff experience and a championship pedigree to boot.
In a scenario where the Raiders could choose between them, it might come down to a few factors. Those factors include age, durability, experience, and maybe most importantly, money. Let’s face it, Philon would cost nowhere near what Suh’s services would. Maybe Philon isn’t too far off with his sentiment here.
*Top Photo: Sports Illustrated/Fan Nation