One interesting development as professional athletes across the world remain quarantined is the increase in transparency as players turn to social media as an outlet.
On Tuesday night, one neat moment occurred with former Detroit Lions cornerback Darius Slay. Hosting an Instagram Live session, he checked in with Lions receiver Marvin Jones Jr., then later had a brief conversation with future first-round pick Jeff Okudah—a player many believe will be Detroit’s pick with the third overall pick.
Earlier this offseason, Slay told Detroit reporters that he and Okudah had been in contact for a while now, and at the NFL Combine, Okudah expressed his gratitude for that mentorship.
“Just being able to reach out to him, talk to him, use him as a resource really, I think it shows what kind of guy he is, because he doesn’t have to talk to me,” Okudah said.
On Tuesday night, though, the two were just checking in, potentially setting up a time to work out together this offseason.
“We gotta tap in this offseason and get some work in,” Okudah said to Slay.
“Oh, you know we getting some work in,” Slay replied. “That’s for sure”
After a quick chat to check in, Slay turned back with his virtual audience and had a lot of praise for the young cornerback.
“One of the young gunners, man,” Slay said. “Watch that boy, that boy nice now. I checked him out, man. He’s nice nice. He’s got a lot, a lot of potential, man. (If) he get some great people around him, man, he’s going to be nice. The future’s big for him, real big.”
When asked if the Lions should pick Okudah, Slay said they’d be a perfect fit.
“I think Detroit needs to (pick him),” Slay said. “That type of defense needs a corner like that, and he can fit it. He’d fit right in.”
The Lions have a big void on their roster after trading away Slay in the opening week of free agency. Though they signed Desmond Trufant to be the immediate replacement, Detroit doesn’t have much in terms of young talent capable of taking a starting role. Okudah would come in and immediately contend for the CB2 spot, potentially even the CB1 job.
And while many Lions fans probably don’t need convincing at this point that Okudah’s impressive career at Ohio State makes him a good fit in Detroit, Slay’s endorsement—as someone who knows both Okudah and the Lions’ defense well—still carries a ton of weight.
You can watch Slay’s entire Instagram Live session on his page (only on mobile), but be aware it disappears after 24 hours.