In a career that has been highly controversial Ndamukong Suh has finally made a sound decision, hiring veteran Creative Artists Agency (CAA) NFL agent Jimmy Sexton. Suh has the potential to be one of the highest paid defensive players in the NFL and with Sexton at the negotiating table that is more likely to be a reality. In 1993 Sexton did just that when he negotiated a contract for Reggie White that made him the highest paid defensive player in the NFL at the time. Further, Sexton represents some of the biggest names in the NFL, including Julio Jones, Jimmy Graham, Jason Witten, and Philip Rivers.
Last month Suh fired Roosevelt Barnes of Relativity Sports, despite earning more money in his first 4 years than any player in NFL history. Jay Z’s Roc Nation now represents Suh in the marketing and endorsement realm. Suh’s decision to hire a CAA agent comes to no surprise because CAA has previously worked with Roc Nation. Further, CAA represents Suh’s teammate, Lions’ starting QB Matthew Stafford.
Suh is currently under contract for 2014 season with the Lions. They will take a $22.4 million cap hit, pending a long-term extension. Lions General Manager Martin Mayhew commented, “I think this will get done on the eve of free agency or the eve of the start of the new league year, which is when free agency starts, or sometime shortly after the start of the new league year.” He further noted, “That would be a good timetable for us. If it doesn’t get done, we’re fine with that. We can create some space. … But I anticipate something getting done with him.” Mayhew’s statement exemplifies the strong leverage that Suh and Sexton have going into his contract negotiation.