Darius Slay didn’t mince his words the night before being traded by the Detroit Lions, all but begging his own team to ship him elsewhere. Now, with his wish granted, the new Philadelphia Eagles cornerback is opening up about why he wanted out in the first place. As noted by the Detroit News’ Justin Rogers, Slay joined WJR 760 in Detroit on Thursday, and while he expressed plenty of appreciation for Lions fans and other staff, he made it clear that he and head coach Matt Patricia did not see eye to eye.
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Patricia and Slay didn’t have a great relationship, according to Rogers, but the latter was even blunter on the radio, indicating that he didn’t respect Patricia as a person even before the franchise made the decision to trade away teammate and friend Quandree Diggs in 2019. Patricia once told Slay he had no business working out with fellow cornerbacks like Aqib Talib and Richard Sherman because those players were elite whereas Slay was just good, per Rogers, and the new Eagles corner apparently realized early on that he wasn’t going to last long playing under the former New England Patriots defensive coordinator.
“Slay said the first year with Patricia was rough and destroyed their relationship,” according to Rogers, “even though the second year was much better.”
Slay’s apparent desire for a new contract (his deal was set to expire after 2020, but the Eagles reportedly extended it through 2023 for $50 million) may have played a part in his departure as well. But others have backed up the notion he and Patricia were at odds. Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press noted Thursday that Slay’s “fun-loving personality never meshed” with Patricia, who “abhorred (Slay’s) practice of signing and exchanging jerseys after every game, win or loss.”
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