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Eagles All-22 Film Review: Darius Slay is showing no signs of slowing down

NFC Championship - San Francisco 49ers v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

Well, I wasn’t planning on writing a review of Darius Slay this year. But seeing as he was ‘cut’ and then ‘brought back’, and I’ve seen a lot of Slay vs. Bradberry analysis online, I thought I would give my thoughts! If you want to read my review of Bradberry, you can view it here. I came to the conclusion that I wouldn’t bring him back but I expected him to get quite a bit more money, so I am pleased with the contract.


No surprises here, but the statistics show a very good cornerback. It is good to see him in the top 35 in tackles because this has been his weakness for a while. Honestly, I don’t think stats do much for a cornerback, but I do put some weight in PFF having him as the 4th best cornerback this year.


+ Some of his man coverage snaps this year were off the charts. Very sticky man coverage traits. His super power is how long he is able to stay in phase before flipping his hips and running. He ran the route for the receiver on outside breaking routes consistently such as comebacks

+ Really good understanding of depth in zone coverage. Will bait quarterbacks into taking the cover 2-hole shot but won’t give them much room. Will explode forward and deal with shorter throws. Good understanding of situational football.

+ He played Justin Jefferson as well as I’ve seen any cornerback play him (along with Jaire Alexander)

+ Very rarely gives up big plays. Doesn’t jump on double moves.

+ Fantastic understanding of playing to his coverage. He knows when he has help and when he doesn't

+ Really improved his effort and physicality in the run game this past 2 seasons


- Gives up a few easy completions due to his slightly passive style. However, this is probably a fault of Gannon as much as Slay’s

- Has improved his effort on tackling greatly since signing with the Eagles, but can still lack concentration

- Can be beaten at the catch point and in general by bigger more physical receivers. Has struggled with Mike Evans at times

- Isn’t asked to press top receivers at the line of scrimmage very often but again, this is a fault of the scheme as much as Slay


Slay’s film was outstanding in 2021 and it was equally as good in 2022. He has been an elite cornerback for 2 years running now and shows no sign of slowing down. I think he’s underrated by the national media and even by quite a few Eagles fans. We all know he will start to decline at some point in the near future, but he has shown no signs of this so far.

At the time of writing this, we don’t have any details about whether he will be restructuring his contract or playing on his current contract. I have no idea when Slay will start to slow down but it’s fair to say that it’s unlikely he will play at this high level for another 2 years. The good news is that Slay’s game doesn’t rely on elite speed but whenever a defensive back loses half a step, it is hard for them to succeed in this league. If/when they do restructure Slay, I would be OK guaranteeing him a high amount of money this year and a reasonable amount next year, but I would not want to give him any real guaranteed money in year 3 when he is 35.

I know it’s not the most popular opinion, but as someone who has watched Slay for a long time and Bradberry closely last year, I think Slay is the better corner despite his age. If the Eagles had lost Slay and re-signed Bradberry, I can’t lie, I would have been disappointed. Bringing back Bradberry and keeping Slay is the best-case scenario. Slay-Bradberry-Maddox is a really good starting set of cornerbacks and I’m excited to watch Slay for another season.

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