Like any rookie cornerback, Darius Slay has had his share of ups and downs this season, but it looks like his biggest peak and valley are going to come within the same week.
Unanimously, Slay played his best game as a pro on Thanksgiving against Green Bay in relief of the injured Chris Houston. Whether that’s more a result of Slay’s ability or the depleted Packers offense remains to be seen, but in either case, it appeared Slay may have been ready to turn a corner.
But instead of building off that performance, it looks like he’ll be missing his next opportunity with a torn meniscus. Now, there is a silver lining here. A meniscus tear is far from a season-ending injury. In fact, you may remember that Slay had the same injury upon joining the team, and missed a month only because he had surgery to repair it.
When the injury — which Slay suffered in practice on Thursday — was reported, head coach Jim Schwartz called it a “freak” knee injury, which had some concerned his season would be over. But a meniscus tear is far less severe than most of the athletic injuries that can happen to a knee, and it almost certainly won’t end his rookie season.
So what does this mean for the Lions down the stretch?
Probably not much. For starters, Slay is only listed as doubtful against Philadelphia. Doubtful is not out. There’s still a chance he could play through the injury.
But considering Chris Houston is back to practice, there may not be any reason for Slay to push through the injury. That means the Lions are really only missing depth. The real question is what happens if neither Slay nor Houston can go? Then the Lions are in a difficult situation with Rashean Mathis and Jonte Green on the wings, Bill Bentley in the slot, and nobody left in reserve.
Make sure to start Nick Foles in your Fantasy lineups if that happens.