After coming up lame in his Super Bowl promise last season, Detroit Lions defensive tackle Nick Fairley tempered his expectations in the offseason.
Via Pro Football Talk:
Now Fairley is saying that he and Ndamukong Suh are already the best defensive tackle tandem in the NFL.
“Of course,” Fairley told the team’s website. “We’re going to give guys trouble, man. It’s like pick your poison this year with our defensive line. You cannot come in and double-team Ndamukong and you can’t come in and double-team me.”
Fairley said that there’s so much talent on the line, with him and Suh in the middle and a three-man rotation at defensive end, that opposing offensive linemen aren’t going to be able to block them all.
“You won’t be able to double-team Ziggy [Ansah] or Jason Jones or Willie [Young]. You have to pick who you’re going to bring your back to chip. We’re going to feed off each other, and when we get that chemistry down, it’s going to look real good for us,” Fairley said.
Fairley and Suh are going to be a problem next season, but Fairley better hold off the talk on becoming the best defensive tackle pair in the entire league. At this point, Detroit's defense is a cauldron of potential and what ifs. Ziggy Ansah is a raw prospect, Fairley has to live up to his draft potential and Suh has to cut out all the extracurricular Kimbo Slice antics that have overshadowed his All-Pro talent. Lastly, if Ansah grasps the intracacies of the defensive end position, he's got some Jean Pierre-Paul type pass rushing ability and the Lions front line is going to be a nightmare for opposing offensive lines and quarterbacks.
In the meantime, they just have to plug in that gaping hole in their secondary.