By Ashley Dunkak
@AshleyDunkak

PHOENIX – For all his fantastic plays in games, All-Pro defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh has delivered some ugly ones as well, as most know. The Miami Dolphins, as head coach Joe Philbin indicated Tuesday, are comfortable that Suh’s occasional bad behavior will not be an issue in Miami.

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“Some of those incidents occurred a long time ago, and obviously players learn from situations, as I think he mentioned,” Philbin said at the owners meetings at the Arizona Biltmore. “What we’re really focused on is his contributions and his performance and his leadership as a Miami Dolphin.

“I think he’s at a little different stage of his career now, but certainly those are things that are important,” Philbin added. “I think he realizes that, and we realize that, so we’re excited about the working relationship that’s going to get started here real soon.”

Suh’s stomp of offensive lineman Evan Dietrich-Smith happened in 2011, and Suh’s apparent groin kick of quarterback Matt Schaub happened in 2012.  Suh got in trouble again in 2014, however, when he appeared to intentionally step on quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Suh was initially suspended for a game for that action, but the suspension was overturned.

For that example, the coach did not have a rebuttal.

“Like I said, I’m comfortable right now,” Philbin said, “and looking forward to get to working with him.”

Aside from the stomps and groin kicks, Suh was in some hot water in Detroit – in terms of local perception – for not participating in the team’s offseason workouts. Instead, he opted to condition on his own. The program no doubt got him in perfect shape, but many believed he should be with his team.

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Philbin seemed to have a similar stance on the importance of players partaking in offseason workouts at the team facility, and he said he talked with Suh about it, but it seemed the coach was unsure whether Suh would actually attend.

“We’ve talked,” Philbin said. “We’ll see how things go, and we’ve talked, and he knows how important the offseason program is. We’ve had great, great attendance at our offseason program every year. That being said, it’s voluntary. None of the players have to be at the offseason program until the mandatory minicamp.

“I expect to see him there, sure, but we’ll see,” Philbin added. “We’ll see how it goes.”

Despite any concerns about Suh’s past incidents, the Dolphins added him for the same reason any team would; they wanted to improve their defense. They believe Suh fits their scheme well, though Philbin acknowledges Suh would be “outstanding” on any team.

“He can make negative plays, create negative plays, and I think one thing on defense that you’re always looking to do is back the offense up,” Philbin said. “He’s a guy that I think throughout the course of his career he’s done that, and very durable player. He’s somebody that you have to think about.

“You’re sitting there on Tuesday and you’re game planning things, so how are you going to pass protect?” Philbin added. “Are you going to run away from him? Are going to run to him? Are you going to double-team him? Are going to try to cut him? Are you going to try to influence him? I think he’s a guy that you have to give a lot of consideration to in matchups.”

Since news of the Suh deal and several others broke the Sunday before the official start of free agency, the NFL launched an investigation to determine whether any tampering occurred. Philbin said the NFL has not spoken to him for that investigation.

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