Jeff Dickerson, Bears: The strike!

Today’s question: Darius Slay is considered one of the best young cornerbacks in the NFL and after a breakout 2015 season became a surefire No. 1 cornerback for the Detroit Lions. He went through a stretch of the season where opposing quarterbacks were actively throwing away from the former second-round pick who spent his first three seasons learning from the now-retired Rashean Mathis.

The Lions are counting on Slay to be a shutdown cornerback entering his fourth season in the league -- a potential contract year. With Detroit trying to lock up Slay for the next chunk of his career, it leads to an interesting question in a division full of strong offenses: Is Darius Slay the best cornerback in the NFC North? We asked the other writers around the division for their thoughts about the always-excitable corner. Wholesale nfl jerseys

Ben Goessling, Vikings: He very well could be. He was probably the best in the division in 2015, and he should continue to improve. The thing I like about Slay is how effective a cover man he is without committing many penalties; he was flagged only three times last season, and that’s what keeps a player like Minnesota’s Xavier Rhodes, for example, from claiming the title as the division’s best corner. He had only two interceptions last year, but it’s not like there’s a ballhawk corner anywhere else in the NFC North right now. Slay probably gives you the best combination of solid coverage without self-nullifying errors (coverage busts or penalties). At the moment, it’s safe to say he’s the best.Cheap nfl jerseys 

Rob Demovsky, Packers: If Sam Shields can stay healthy for a full season, he’d be in that conversation, although the Packers’ No. 1 corner might not be in the “young cornerbacks” category anymore. He’s entering his seventh NFL season even though he’s only 28 years old. Also, I wouldn’t sleep on Damarious Randall, the Packers’ first-round pick last year. He made some impressive plays last year as a part-time player and will be a full-timer this season. But Slay is quickly becoming one of those guys that quarterbacks have to beware of if they’re going to throw his way.Wholesale Minnesota Vikings jerseys

Jeff Dickerson, Bears: My vote is for Green Bay’s Sam Shields. Slay is a close second, though. Slay is blessed with tremendous size and speed. And at only 25 years old, he is a prime candidate to receive a lucrative contract extension in Detroit. However, Shields’ overall body of work is better -- 18 career interceptions and 66 pass break-ups. He is the top playmaker in Green Bay’s secondary. The Packers thought highly enough of Shields to give him a four-year deal with $12.5 million guaranteed. One knock against Shields is health -- he missed four games due to injury last year, and since entering the league in 2010 he hasn't played a full 16-game regular season. But he’s still the best cornerback in the NFC North, with Slay the runner-up.



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