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Lions Made Correct Decision Trading Darius Slay

Read more on why the Detroit Lions made the correct decision in moving on from Darius Slay

Bob Quinn, the Detroit Lions' former general manager, made his biggest offseason decision this past year when he traded away All-Pro cornerback Darius Slay to the Philadelphia Eagles. 

Obviously, Slay and former Lions head coach Matt Patricia didn’t always see eye-to-eye. 

With a new contract looming, as well, Quinn and Patricia felt it was best to trade away their one true playmaker on defense. 

At the time, it was a decision met with plenty of criticism. 

Only getting back a third-and-fifth-round selection for Slay didn’t seem like a fair deal to some, despite recent trades indicating that it was the market value for a cornerback his age (29).

Now on the Eagles, Slay signed a very lucrative extension, which he was looking for all along.

However, “Big Play Slay” hasn’t exactly played his best football in recent years.

According to Pro Football Reference’s data, Slay has allowed the most passing yards in the NFL in 2020. He has yet to record an interception for his new team, and is Pro Football Focus’ 75th-ranked corner, with an overall grade of 57.2. 

Those numbers are tied with Nevin Lawson, a former member of Detroit's defense. 

In 2020, Slay has allowed a 76.4 completion percentage and 120.1 passer rating against him -- which both represent the worst of his career. 

It should be noted that Slay’s job is one of the taller tasks in the entire NFL. He has shadowed an opponent's top wideout on six occasions this season.

Needless to say, having a talent likes Slay on Detroit's roster could have slightly aided the secondary this season. 

Would it have been enough to make a considerable difference? 


Even with Slay on the roster last season, the defense still struggled. 

"Father Time" never loses, and it sure seems like Slay’s best days are behind him. 

That’s not to exclude him from having a bounce-back season down the road. However, for his price tag, it’s more than fair to expect more from him.

With a Lions rebuild having been looming after the completion of the season, it was the right time for both parties to move on from each other while the possibility still existed. 

Making the trade allowed Detroit to play younger talent in the secondary, subsequently causing much-needed experience to be gained. 

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Wide receiver Travis Fulgham and running back Jason Huntley

There are other ex-Lions on the Eagles' roster that fans have been paying attention to.  

Wideout Travis Fulgham, a sixth-round draft pick of Detroit’s in 2019, made a big splash with his extended playing time, which was due to injuries to other Philadelphia receivers.

He saw his first offensive snaps of the season in Week 4, and was able to compile a league-leading 435 yards through Week 8.

Fulgham was the seventh-best receiver, according to PFF, during that timespan.

Since then, he only has four receptions for 32 yards, and is dead last in the PFF rankings.

Meanwhile, running back Jason Huntley made his way to Philadelphia, after the Lions waived him during their final roster cuts.

Considering he never returned a punt in college and muffed a couple of punts in training camp, it was difficult to find a role for him on the roster outside of special teams. 

While with the Eagles, he has made four game appearances, and only has accumulated three rushing attempts for 14 yards. He does not have any receptions on the season. 

It’s always easy to point out ex-Lions players when they do well on other teams, but rarely do you see them talked about when they are not lighting the league up. 

It's why a multitude of perspectives is always needed. 

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