Raven’s Terrell Suggs closer to “100 percent”
The 30-year-old Terrell Suggs has been slowly but steadily improving through the playoffs. But he’s kept a low profile during that journey probably in hopes of taking the San Francisco 49ers by surprise when they faceoff in the Super Bowl on Feb.3.
“He’s getting better,” said Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh. “He’s becoming quicker, faster, more explosive – all of those things. You can tell that (the Achilles) is healing. He’s just playing more like a normal 100 percent Terrell Suggs would play.”
However, Terrell Suggs wasn’t expected to play at all this season after sustaining a partial tear to the right Achilles tendon in March then missing all of offseason, preseason and training camp. Terrell Suggs unexpectedly returned in mid-October to face the Houston Texans but by December his progress was again hampered by a torn right bicep.
“I don’t look at it at all like he hasn’t done something successfully. I look at it as this has been a bonus that we ever had the guy,” said Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Dean Pees. “I never dreamed that we’d ever have the guy at all this year, so anything we’ve gotten out of him, to me, is a positive and a bonus.”
Lacking his usual speed, explosiveness and dominant physical presence on the defense, Terrell Suggs wrapped up the regular season with just 22 tackles and eight sacks while appearing in eight games. But Terrell Suggs has appeared closer to his NFL 2011 Defensive Player of the Year dominating hey- days during the playoffs.
“It’s crazy. You could look at (Terrell Suggs) when he first came back and be like, ‘Oh yeah, he’s not the same Suggs,’” said Baltimore Ravens defensive end Pernell McPhee. “But then, as the season kept going, he kept getting better at things and better at his technique. And then the playoffs hit and he just got explosive.”
The 10-year veteran Terrell Suggs had a huge impact on the Baltimore Ravens’ run game and has posed to be a determining factor in the pass rush during the postseason.
“You can just see he’s playing a lot more freely, and he’s not really stressing about things as much,” said Baltimore Ravens outside linebacker Albert McClellan of Terrell Suggs’ progress towards full recovery. “He’s shining. … He’s been huge. And he demands a double-team, or he demands attention, which is letting other people come free and just opening up a lot of things for everybody else.”
Terrell Suggs nearly matched his regular season numbers with 19 tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble in just three games in the playoffs. The five-time Pro Bowler Terrell Suggs had 10 tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble against the Peyton Manning led Denver Broncos in the playoffs.
“He’s got a lot of confidence,” added Pernell McPhee. “He (Terrell Suggs) feels like he’s got a lot of his speed back. I (saw) him working some moves the other day in practice … (moves) that I hadn’t seen him do all year. … I’m ready for him to go out there and shine on Super Bowl Sunday.”