It’s pretty good to be cornerback Darius Slay these days.
He just got done playing in his second straight Pro Bowl, he signed a contract extension a couple seasons ago, and most of the former and current players asked about him at the Super Bowl last week consider him to be one of the best cornerbacks in the game.
Slay never lacks confidence in his abilities, but what makes him good is that he’s still trying to improve and get better. Slay has never thought he’s arrived as a player. Even this offseason he hopes to improve his game.
“I still need to get better at turning over the ball,” he said during a break in appearances on radio row at the Super Bowl. “Punching the ball out. Just figure out ways to get the offense the ball.”
The Lions had just 14 takeaways this season and just seven interceptions.
Slay led the NFL with eight interceptions in 2017, but that number dropped to three this past season. There were less opportunities this season, as teams mostly stayed away from his side.
Slay has defended 91 passes since entering the NFL, the most passes defended by a player over the last six seasons. His 11 interceptions the past two seasons are tied for the most by a cornerback in that span.
But still, he wants more.
“Not as many opportunities (this year) as a I had last year, because of a lot of respect due, but they’re going to come again,” he said.
Hopefully Lions fans appreciate the kind of skill they're seeing from a player like Slay in his prime. One thing is clear when talking to people around the league, they have a ton of respect for Slay’s abilities.