Over the years, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has had a well-documented rivalry with defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh. Because of this, many people became surprised this past season when Rodgers said that he and Suh planned to connect and talk after the Packers’ regular-season game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Suh essentially left him high and dry, though, and didn’t speak to him after the conclusion of the competition. However, the story of their fierce rivalry may actually come to an end soon.
Aaron Rodgers and Ndamukong Suh’s rivalry goes back years
For years, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers had to face Ndamukong Suh twice a season when he was on the Detroit Lions. With Rodgers becoming the Packers’ starter in 2008, and with the Lions drafting Suh in the 2010 NFL draft, the two stars had plenty of meetings.
They were both two of the best players in the NFL during the years that they played each other, too. Aaron Rodgers helped the Packers win a Super Bowl in 2010, and he won two league MVP awards in 2011 and 2014. Suh, on the other hand, won the 2010 AP Defensive Rookie of the Year award, was a four-time Pro Bowl selection during those years, and earned First-Team All-Pro honors three times. Suh has also had a really successful career against the Packers. He has registered 10 QB hits and 5.5 sacks.
This has all led to Rodgers and Suh developing a fierce rivalry. In fact, during a 2014 matchup, it appeared that Suh stepped on Rodgers’ leg twice during a game with division title implications, per Yahoo Sports. This came after Rodgers had been dealing with a calf injury a couple of weeks before that. The NFL then suspended Suh for the Lions’ playoff game that season, but he won an appeal and ended up playing.
The 2014 season, though, was Suh’s final season with the Lions. However, in Suh and the Buccaneers’ regular-season game against Rodgers and the Packers in 2020, he got flagged for a late hit on Rodgers. The two then traded some words after a Suh sack a couple of plays later.
This rivalry has certainly been a storyline in several games over the years, but it may finally come to an end soon.
Aaron Rodgers’ rivalry with Ndamukong Suh may come to an end
Following their regular-season matchup in 2020, Rodgers said that he and Suh had a conversation in the third quarter. The convo made the Packers’ quarterback think that they would bury the hatchet after the game, but Suh never showed.
“It was one of those, ‘Hey, you’re old, I’m old, let’s talk some things out,'” Rodgers said on the Oct. 20, 2020 episode of The Pat McAfee Show, per an October Sportscasting story. “There might have been something lost in translation.”
Suh recently addressed Rodgers’ comments.
“I think Aaron expected me to come to his locker room and see him after the game, and if anybody knows me, I’m right on my bike, my Keiser bike, right after the game. I’m getting my legs prepared for the next practice on Wednesday,” he said on the Feb. 23 episode of Shannon Sharpe’s Club Shay Shay. “…Yeah, we did have that conversation in the middle of a play, and really I didn’t have the focus or want to to go and have a conversation post-game. Like I said, I’m worried about my body.”
Despite essentially standing Rodgers up after the game, he did reach out to him.
“I reached out to him; we exchanged some messages,” he said. “Actually, after the NFC Championship Game, because I knew it was going to be a long haul before we’d get on the bus, I ran up to him and said, ‘Let’s connect in the offseason’, and he said ‘for sure.’… We have some mutual investments and opportunities where we’ve could’ve crossed paths, but I think it’s at this particular age, when it’s off-field, we’ll definitely try and find a time. And I’m open to definitely connect.”
Well, that sounds promising. Maybe Aaron Rodgers will actually squash things with one of his biggest enemies this offseason.
Suh said he will always try to ‘piss’ the Packers’ quarterback off
Even if Suh and Rodgers let bygones be bygones this offseason, Suh will still try and get under the skin of the Packers’ quarterback in future meetings.
“At the end of the day, I’m going to always want to piss off Aaron and make him not want to be my friend on the football field,” Suh said.
It’s not anything against Rodgers, though.
“Without question, [it’s] all quarterbacks; even Tom [Brady], I’m trying to piss Tom off during practice,” he said.
At least Aaron Rodgers knows it’s nothing personal. Ndamukong Suh just has a job to do, and he has done it well for years.
Stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference