Eagles CB Darius Slay Blasts Fired Lions Coach: ‘I Was the Problem’


Darius Slay


Darius Slay with the Eagles in camp.

Darius Slay left Detroit on not-so-good terms, particularly due to his strained relationship with Lions head coach Matt Patricia. So it was only fitting that the Eagles shutdown cornerback would have something to say following Patricia’s unceremonious dismissal. Slay has been thriving in Philadephia — arguably a lone bright spot — and playfully poked fun at the situation.

The former Lions cornerback first posted the open-for-interpretation “eye emoji” when the news first broke of Patricia’s firing in Detroit. Predictably, after friends and teammates tagged him on Twitter, Slay let his true feelings be known. The two had a tumultuous tenure together in Detroit, culminating with Patricia calling Slay out in a team meeting for not being an “elite cornerback” despite earning All-Pro honors after recording eight interceptions in the 2017 season.

“Your first impression always your best impression,” Slay of Patricia, via Detroit Free Press. “Like I said, I would never disrespect him in that way.”

To his credit, Slay has never talked negatively about his time in Detroit. He often shouts out his former Lions teammates on social media and talks glowingly of that suffocating 2014 Lions defense. Still, it’s clear the wounds inflicted on him by Patricia run deep and possibly left long-term scars on the entire Lions organization.

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Slay Expected to Cover DK Metcalf on Monday

The Eagles couldn’t be happier about Detroit’s decision to slander Slay and eventually trade him. He’s been the true shutdown cornerback that Philadelphia has lacked forever, or at least since Asante Samuel was patrolling the secondary. He’s held elite receivers like JuJu Schuster-Smith, Cooper Kupp, Terry McLaurin, Amari Cooper, Marquise Brown, A.J. Green in check all year.

Slay may get his biggest test of the season this week when he’s expected to travel with Seahawks stud DK Metcalf. He’s been a thorn in the Eagles’ side ever since the franchise passed on taking him in the 2019 draft. This is where Slay can earn his hefty contract and defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz feels as if he’s up to the challenge.

“Slay has generally been good handling guys like that, whether it’s … I mean, you name it, A.J. Green or any of these other guys that he’s been matched up on,” Schwartz told reporters earlier this week. “He has those long arms and he can poke balls away and things like that. It’s a great challenge for us. It’s not just getting him covered, it’s tackling him. You have to defend every inch of the field with a guy like that.”

Eagles Seeing Light at End of Tunnel

The Eagles have been one of those rare teams that shake out extra juice late in the season. Especially when their backs are up against the wall. Well, to quote the late-great Michael Jackson, it’s time to “live it off the wall” as the calendar soon turns to December. The Eagles are 0-4 versus Seattle under head coach Doug Pederson.

“We talk about putting ourselves in the position in the month of December, right, kind of that fourth quarter of the season to hopefully play for a playoff game and be in the postseason,” Pederson said. “Guys see that. I think it’s always been the next-man-up mentality here. We’re going to do it again as far as the next man up, they got to step in and play and perform.”

Pederson, of course, is referring to the Eagles’ unbelievable ability to still control their own destiny. Philly is in second place in the NFC East at 3-6-1 following Washington’s win over Dallas on Thanksgiving but the Eagles can easily usurp that crown back in the worst division in football. If they simply win out the rest of the way, they will indeed host a home playoff game.

“It’s something about this time of year when you start seeing sort of that light at the end of the tunnel,” Pederson said. “You have an opportunity to win your division, to maybe potentially do that, and obviously have a post-season game. That all kind of motivates teams this time of the year.”

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