Eagles’ Darius Slay calls performance against DK Metcalf the worst game of his career

The Philadelphia Eagles gave Darius Slay $50 million over three years to contain elite wide receivers like DK Metcalf. To say Slay fell flat on his face in the Eagles’ loss to the Seattle Seahawks would be an understatement. 

Metcalf finished with 10 catches for a career-high 177 yards in Seattle’s 23-17 win over Philadelphia, with seven catches for 141 yards were when Slay was covering him. The Eagles decided to leave their high-priced cornerback in man coverage against Metcalf, who dominated the matchup against Slay throughout the night.

“It was tough. I feel like the plays weren’t going my way,” Slay admitted after the game. “Like I said, he did a great job of catching the ball. He did everything good as a receiver. I would say this is by far the worst game I have ever played in the league. I truly lost every 50/50 ball. I was probably 0-for. I have never been that, but I say props to him, he played his ass off today, and I have to get better.

“I let the team down. I told the defense, that game was on me.”

Slay took full accountability for his performance, which is uncommon with the recent history of Eagles’ high-priced cornerbacks. The Eagles haven’t received the bang for their buck regarding Slay’s contract, as the former All-Pro cornerback has allowed 71.4% of the passes targeted his way to be caught heading into Monday’s loss against the Seahawks. Slay has allowed 8.0 yards per target as opposing quarterbacks have a 100.8 passer rating when targeting him, even though he’s only allowed one touchdown on the year. 

The Eagles guaranteed Slay $12 million this year to be an elite cornerback. While Slay has played the part at times, the lack of interceptions (zero) and passes defensed (four) are concerning — despite Slay being targeted just 5.1 times a game (not counting his numbers against the Seahawks). 

“I am a man about what I do. I am always feeling great. I am not always in a bad mood or bad spirit, but I understand and I have great ownership,” Slay said. “I know that I can change the game and I could have helped. I put that game on me because I was supposed to do my job and shut him down. 

“Like I said, he was making every catch possible, every 50/50 one. That is why he had no yards after catch because I am right there. He just made more plays than I did and I take real big ownership because I feel like I am one of the best in the game and I will continue to take my ownership. He got the best of me today, but I am looking forward to going to work next week, this week, and getting better for the team. They deserve it, I deserve it, and this organization does.”

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Darius Slay has ‘worst game’ of his career trying to stop DK Metcalf

The Eagles traded for Darius Slay and gave him a contract extension for these games. There are occasions where the Eagles are going to ask him to shut down their opponent’s top receiver.

Slay didn’t come close to doing that against DK Metcalf on Monday night.

At least he owned it.

“I would say this is by far the worst game I have ever played in the league,” said Slay, now in his eighth NFL season. “I truly lost every 50/50 ball. I was probably O-for. I have never been that, but I say props to him, he played his ass off today, and I have to get better.”

Metcalf ended up with 10 catches for 177 yards and most of that damage came with the Pro Bowl corner covering him.

At least Slay was accountable.

In his postgame press conference, the 29-year-old cornerback said he let the Eagles down and he even told the rest of the defense that game was on him.

Of course, the Eagles’ defense as a whole wasn’t the biggest problem in the 23-17 loss. The Eagles’ offense continues to flounder and had mustered just nine points before the final touchdown in garbage time.

The Eagles this offseason struck out in the free agent cornerback pool and then traded a third-round pick and a fifth-round pick to get Slay out of Detroit. The next day, he signed a three-year deal worth $50 million ($30 guaranteed). That contract comes out to an average of $16.7 million per season.

This offseason, the Eagles paid Slay to be a shutdown corner. Sometimes that means tough duty of trying to stop physical freaks like Metcalf.

 

“I thought overall, [Slay] did some good things,” Doug Pederson said. “Played tough. That’s a tough receiver to defend, and I thought D-Slay did some good things.”

When asked after the game if there were any conversations about getting him some more help to guard Metcalf, Slay seemed offended.

“Nah, hell no,” he said. “Next question.”

Well, the next question is this: Is Slay a really good cornerback or is he a shutdown corner?

Because on Monday night, really good wasn’t good enough.

“I put that game on me because I was supposed to do my job and shut him down,” Slay said. “Like I said, he was making every catch possible, every 50/50 one. That is why he had no yards after catch because I am right there. He just made more plays than I did.

“And I take real big ownership because I feel like I am one of the best in the game and I will continue to take my ownership. He got

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