Lions' Suh only rookie to be named to AP All-Pro team
Ndamukong Suh's efforts through his rookie season did not go unnoticed. The Lions defensive tackle was named a Pro Bowl starter weeks ago.
His latest honor was being named to the Associated Press All-Pro team on Monday. He was the only rookie selected and is the first rookie defensive lineman to be named to the All-Pro team since Jevon Kearse in 1999.
"It's humbling and encouraging at the same time. Kearse is a well-known player and was a proven player over time, so hopefully I can live up to the standard he set. I was fortunate to be able to grasp my role in our scheme and to flourish in it. I'm just going to keep working hard to improve because I'll never be satisfied,'' Suh told the Associated Press.
He is the first first-year defensive tackle to be named All-Pro since Wally Chambers in 1973 and just the eighth in NFL history.
Suh, who led the teams with 10 sacks, set goals for himself for his rookie season and said being All-Pro was one of them.
"It's a great honor and it's an award I've had my eye on along with being in the Pro Bowl. Those are two of the highest accomplishments you can have other than winning a Super Bowl and being MVP. To be the only rookie speaks volumes about the help I got from my teammates --especially on the defensive line -- and my coaches,'' Suh said.
Suh underwent shoulder surgery two weeks ago. He's splitting his time in the offseason between Lincoln, Neb., where he's doing most of his shoulder rehab, along with Houston and Portland, Ore. He's not sure when he will be back to 100 percent.
"It's tough to put a timetable on it because all bodies are different and they respond differently to injuries,'' Suh told the Associated Press.
The Lions announced on Jan. 5 that Suh would forego playing in the Pro Bowl so he could have the surgery and get going on the rehab right away. He could have delayed surgery and played in the Pro Bowl.
"It's going to be tough to not play, but I made the decision to put my team ahead of myself and I don't regret that for one minute,'' Suh said.
Suh was one of three Lions to undergo offseason shoulder surgery. Quarterback Matthew Stafford's right shoulder was operated on last week. Cornerback Chris Houston was also expected to undergo shoulder surgery.
If a new collective bargaining agreement is reached by the March 4 deadline, the Lions would start their offseason workouts in mid-March.
(Paula Pasche covers the Lions. Follow her on Twitter @PaulaPasche.)