Darius Slay Details Contentious Relationship With Matt Patricia

Matt Patricia

Getty Matt Patricia during a game in Minnesota.

The Detroit Lions traded Darius Slay, and it was obvious for months that tension was brewing between the team’s brass and their top defender. Following Slay leaving town, the cornerback opened up in a big way.

After Slay was sent away to the Philadelphia Eagles, he stopped by WJR-760 AM and spoke about the experience. As expected, he held nothing back as it relates to his old team and his old boss Matt Patricia. It’s safe to say that Slay didn’t exactly have the best exit with the team that drafted him.

Slay and Patricia’s relationship was explored, and here’s some of the best takeaways from the interview.

A few more specifics on that incident were provided by Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, who explained in a piece that the dustup occurred during a team meeting in which Slay’s feelings were hurt by Patricia, and a comment he made.

“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 said. “I posted a picture (of a wide receiver on social media), 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.”

In the same piece, Patricia responded to Slay’s comments and provided his side of the story:

“Over the last two seasons, Darius and I have had multiple conversations in private that I believed were constructive and satisfactory,” the 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.”

Obviously, the duo never saw eye to eye and couldn’t agree in the end, which is why the likelihood of a deal playing out was always strong. Everybody who paid attention realized that for some reason, things had gone south and the only real solution was a trade.

Now, everyone finally knows the reason.

Darius Slay Sends Twitter Farewell For Lions Fans

Slay, though he didn’t get along with the coaching staff, had plenty to say following the deal to the fans. The cornerback has maintained from the beginning that he loves the Lions and their fans, and in his emotional post following the trade, he thanked Detroit fans for all their support through the years.

The Lions have been the only team that Slay has ever known, so it will be a dramatic shift to see him elsewhere. It’s also safe to say plenty of fans are sad about this and the way the exit played out.

Another Potential Reason Revealed For Lions Friction With Darius Slay

Why were the Lions so ready to move on from Slay? According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press in another piece, it was a Patricia issue with Slay as well. The Detroit coach doesn’t like his players swapping jerseys with opponents. That’s something Slay is famous for and loves to do. Here’s a look at what Birkett wrote as it relates to the possible reasoning behind the lions wanting to trade Slay:

“Slay sat out voluntary workouts and mandatory minicamp last spring in a contractual dispute that was never resolved; his fun-loving personality never meshed with third-year Lions coach Matt Patricia, who abhorred his practice of signing and exchanging jerseys after every game, win or loss; and he didn’t hide his displeasure when the Lions traded his good friend Quandre Diggs to the Seattle Seahawks in the fall.”

Lions fans have been looking for an answer as it relates to why the relationship with Slay went south and how it went south so fast. It’s possible that these deep personality disagreements had a lot to do with that in the end.

Was it the right decision to move Slay in the end? It’s something that the Lions will now find out. Regardless, the move has now been made and this relationship is officially in the past.

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