It's safe to say Darius Slay is happy to be moving on from the Detroit Lions.
The All-Pro cornerback was traded by Detroit to the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday, partly due to his unsalvagable relationship with Lions head coach Matt Patricia. Shortly after being traded, Slay told Detroit's WJR radio station he didn't respect Patricia as a person, per Justin Rogers of the Detroit News.
Slay on WJR said he didn't respect Matt Patricia as a person even before the Diggs trade.— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) March 19, 2020
I knew the relationship wasn't great, but Slay isn't holding back.
Slay also proceeded to rip Patricia for a 2018 incident in which he felt disrespected by the former New England Patriots defensive coordinator.
"He told me in front of the whole team, in the team meeting room, showed clips of me in practice getting a ball caught on me or so in practice," Slay told the Detroit Free Press. "I posted a picture (of a wide receiver on Instagram), and he told me, stop sucking this man’s private. So I’m like, 'Whoa.' I’m like, 'Hold up.' Where I’m from, that don’t fly. Cause I wouldn’t say that to him. I wouldn’t say to him to stop you know what to Bill Belichick. I wouldn’t do that. That’s just not me as a man. That’s disrespectful to me and so from there on it was done with."
Another incident that irked Slay was Patricia telling the three-time Pro Bowler he had no business hanging around "elite" cornerbacks like Richard Sherman and Aqib Talib, because he was only "good."
Slay said Matt Patricia told him he had no business working out with guys like Richard Sherman and Aqib Talib because those guys were elite and Slay was just good.— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) March 19, 2020
Darius Slay on WJR: I wanted to stay for a minute, but I knew how me and Matt Patricia were and that wasn't going to last long.— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) March 19, 2020
Slay said he disagrees with the coach on a lot of things. Said he was bothered by Patricia saying he wasn't elite, only good.
Patricia responded to Slay's comments in a statement e-mailed to the Detroit Free Press.
"Over the last two seasons, Darius and I have had multiple conversations in private that I believed were constructive and satisfactory," Patricia's statement read. "My discussions with athletes are confidential and I won't comment on anything discussed with our players in a team meeting. I appreciate his hard work and wish he and his family all the success in Philadelphia.”
Slay went on to say his relationship with Patricia improved in 2019, but the incidents in 2018 made their relationship impossible to fully repair.
With Slay's seven-year Lions tenure officially over, he'll provide a huge boost to an Eagles secondary that desperately needs it. In 2019, Slay had two interceptions in 14 games to go along with 13 passes defended.
Patricia is 9-22 since leaving the Patriots to become the Lions' head coach in 2018.