Better than Slay/Melvin?

This season (assuming we have one) we are likely to see two new starting corner backs in Desmond Trufant and rookie Jeff Okudah. Do you believe this years starting combination will be better than last years pairing of Darius Slay and Rashaan Melvin.

QB’s last year averaged a 99.6 passer rating against the Lions and we allowed 3599 passing yards. Darius had 2 Ints and Rashaan Melvin had 0.

Granted defense is a team game, however this was a major change in our roster so I am curious how people think it will impact us. Did we upgrade, downgrade or stay relatively the same from a purely CB standpoint?

Personally I believe we stayed pretty much the same.

Rashaan had a disappointing season and at times it felt like Darius slay’s conflict with the coaches affected his desire to be on the field. That said I think Darius is still the best player of the 4 at this point in his career.

Okudah is a rookie and CB is a tough position for rookies to learn and be efficient. Trufant is solid but he seems to have lost a step. Veterans usually have a nice bounce back year with a new team so I think he will have a better year than Okudah.

If we see any increase in productivity I think it will be in the way of run support from the CB position rather than passing defense. I’d like to hear what others think. Are our starting CB’s this year better, worse, or about the same?

I think it’s too soon to tell, but if I were to take a stab at it I would say that the differential on the positive sense between okuda and Melvin is going to be roughly = the differential in a negative sense between slay and truant, think the talent level is upgraded And most of it depends upon how quickly okuda adjust to NFL speed and strength

A good bit better but true font would have to stay healthy as well as okuda getting up to speed quickly

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Not without a pre-season. Rookie CBs need reps. We’re getting a reduced training camp (I think?) and no more than 2 pre-season games, probably zero. Plus no camp work against other teams. Okudah is going to have a learning curve, no matter how good he is, and this year, that curve really isn’t going to start until Week 1.

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I wouldn’t be surprised if he were not the day 1 starter.

yeah, very true. He is gonna see tweets til he proves he can keep up.

I’m going to venture to say that the Okudah-Trufant duo will be better if only because:

(1) Harmon starting over Harris should be a major upgrade;
(2) Walker has another year of experience under his belt.

They will be better because the guys behind them will be better.

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We are instantly better by virtue of losing Melvin.

How many reps would’ve Okudah got in during the preseason? Maybe one games worth? You think that’s gonna set him back? Okudah has crazy good work ethic and we already know he’s been putting in work. Preseason is more about finding out what you don’t already know, we know what Okudah is. Better without a doubt.

I LOVE this thread at this point. There is no right or wrong here but it is fun to think about.

I think they are going to be better? Why? I’m glad you asked! As hinted at Trufant choose to sign contract to be here and I think that matters. Desmond is a fine player. Not Slay level quite but still solid. Smart but not as athletic. He choose to be here in this scheme with these coaches and I am expecting a solid season from thus cagey veteran. Is he a step down from 2019 Slay? Nlope, not at all. Slay IS the better player. No doubt in my mind. But Slay didn’t play well in 2019 and this thread is about being better than 2019. I think Trufant will be a better player HERE in 2020 than Slay was HERE in 2019. I think Slay is a better player and it SUCKS Patricia and Slay could not mend their relationship. That falls heavy on the head coach but Slay bears some responsibility too.

In terms of Okudah…he is made to play in this scheme. It should feel like home for Jeffery. He gets to do what he does best here and I think he will be a fish to water in Detroit. Yep, he is gonna be up and down but he is replacing MELVIN, not Slay in 2020 and to me I pick Okudah to have a better 2020 than Melvin had in 2019. Rashaan missed three games and was mostly a non-factor overall.

So yes, I think Okudah and Trufant are an upgrade over Slay and Melvin as those guys were not very good in 2019. I expect Desmond and Jeffery to at least be good but not great in 2020.

Past that though I would add that the competition at CB is FIERCE now. Amani Oruwariye is the 4th CB and he is gonna be a much better player in year 2 and he got great experience in year one. We have Coleman but he is surrounded by guys that should at least go to team meetings!

Past the top four we have some really solid #5 and #6 options too. Best top to bottom CB group I have seen in Detroit since the 90s at least.

The things pointed out so far that I really like are how the improved play of the safeties will have a big impact on the corners which is absolutely an awesome point.

Then the desire to be here playing for Detroit. Those are impact factors to me and I really hope we see some “Big Play” from our new CB’s.

I loved Big Play Slay and what he did for our team when he was here, but here hoping for a bright future for our new guys.

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Love your take… I’ll predict that Slay’s play will no longer be BIG, unless it’s going the other way… in other words… he’ll still be Big Play Slay… but those big plays will go against him. slay was built to play in scheme like this… and he isn’t playing in this scheme anymore. In addition, I’m growing tired of whiny ass bitches like him and Calvin, and others. Glover seems to have set up a channel for whining. Actually, most of these whiners are retired (good) or playing lousy. Pete Carroll can kiss my ass… quandary isn’t all that great… it’s a smoke screen. See ya all… wouldn’t wanna be with ya… theses players make bazillions, and don’t have the willingness to tow the line like most of America does, or even wants to… again… I don’t wanna be ya… see ya

The guy that benefits the most from losing Slay I think is 27 year old Justin Coleman.

A secondary is a lot like an OL. Guys need to be on the same page, working together, knowing where help is coming and where they are vulnerable. If one guys bails on a play and free lances the coverage falls apart. That isn’t deep or original thought of course.

"One Lions source, who spoke to the Free Press on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter, said he considered Slay “a major cancer” last season and that “he would sit in meetings and not pay attention” then “go into the locker room and tell other players how the coaches are full of shit.”

When I say missed meetings I really mean mentally he was checked out. I don’t want this can opened again but we are looking at Slay in 2019 and the context is that he is a great player who played poorly in 2019 as he hated his coach and he didn’t pay attention in meetings. Patricia is at fault here, I am just laying out the case why I think Trufant can actually be better here in 2020 than Slay was here in 2019 despite Slay being a more talented football player.

Okudah is a sponge and a #2 CB at this point. Jeffery is already a student of the game and he isn’t stepping into a #1 CB role in 2020. To me that smells like an upgrade over Melvin who was a smart player but his skill set and ability just wasn’t high enough to stick as a viable #2 outside CB. Melvin turned 30 with the Lions and while he is awesome for doing what he did as an UDFA…I think time is catching up with him. Justin Coleman is also an undrafted guy but three years younger and I think faster and built to play the slot.

I now the conversation is around CB but I think Harmon is a HUGE addition to this club. Our new Glover Quin. A captain of the secondary for this scheme.

Yes, I am expecting MUCH better results in 2020 than 2019 even if the pass rush is lacking again.

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Um, when you’re best player on defense is a cancer… that smacks of primadonna shit… I hope slay fails… he was one of my favorite lions, but I have no allegiance or respect for pissants… apparently he is one. Blames it on the coaching… another reason he’s a pissant… can’t step up… can’t own it… can’t meet the expectation… see ya … wouldn’t wanna be ya

I hearken back to Chris Spielman talking early in the season about how the Lions needed to work out their communication problems on the back end. It was surprising to me at the time because I thought the back end was the strength of the defense. Within 2 weeks of that comment from Chris, Diggs was gone. Then, of course, we heard after the season from the parties involved what was derailing them. And, I can’t say this enough, with Melvin gone this secondary is undoubtedly in better shape.


Addition by subtraction… slay , Calvin, diggs, Quin…good riddance imo. And there are those who piss on Patricia. Maybe there’s a bit there, or was… but there are a lot more players that have said they’ve come here for MP, or wanted to be here with him, than a few whiny pissants… those who post about how MP sucks because 4 pissants whined, without counting more thann10 players who wanted to be here because of MP… are very much like the part of society that just whines and whines because they don’t like the tone of social conversation… but then we have ex players who whine and whine that their millions are not enough… they need to a pound of fresh white meat… blah blah blah…


Calvin formally announced his retirement on March 8, 2016. And, as Stafford indicated, he really wasn’t surprised.

Calvin made his decision a full season before Caldwell was fired on January 1, 2018 and Patricia was hired on February 5, 2018.

Anyway, Calvin’s retirement forced Stafford to become a better QB because the offense was more diverse. So, yes, addition by subtraction.

That’s why the Lions don’t get the best players. The best players don’t recruit other players to the team. The Lions will stay a below average team until their reputation changes. Period. You don’t win games with less talent. The Lions don’t get the best coaches either. That’s also who they keep cycling through coaches and schemes. There has to be a fundamental change in how they do their football operations.

How can anyone judge last year’s secondary with the none existing pass rush we had. If our pass rush is the same the play of our DBs will be similar. If the pass rush actually exist they will probably be better. Hard for any DB to have to cover for 8 sec or longer.


I think ultimately we will see a lot of growing pains in our secondary this year.
I highly expect Okudah to struggle early on. Missing Mini Camp, and preseason games will slow is adjustment to the NFL.
I think the safety group and LBer group are improved and this should help as well.
The DL is still a big question mark for me. I think we lack depth at DT. One injury could really set the DL back.

I believe we are because it’s not just the CB’s, which also include Coleman and a second year AO. We will be better at Safety with a healthy and third year Walker, Harmon and a 2nd year Harris as our 3rd Safety. I think Okudah will have great success as a rookie, because we don’t ask our outside CB’s to do anything special. See the guy lining up in front of you? Blanket him. He does that very very well and he’s big, tall and fast. He won’t need a lot of train up time to do what he’s always done at a high level IMHO.