If this Chris Long idea works out, what does that mean for Vinny Curry?
Not many people remember this now, but the Philadelphia Eagles had a nice showing in the 2012 NFL Draft. With their first four picks the Eagles landed defensive tackle Fletcher Cox, linebacker Mychal Kendricks and defensive end Vinny Curry (both taken in the second round) and quarterback Nick Foles. Brandon Boykin was also part of that class. His trade wasn’t an overly-popular move when it happened.
What we all hoped would happen:
The prospect of eventually seeing Curry line up next to Cox for years was exciting for many. Unfortunately, for a myriad of reasons things, just haven’t worked out the way most Eagles fans and coaches would have liked. To this point of his career, Curry’s contributed 88 tackles. He’s also forced two fumbles and brought opposing quarterbacks to the turf 19 times. His nine sacks in 2014 was second only to Connor Barwin.
A set of unforeseen and unwanted circumstances:
You all know what happened next. An unimpressive 2015 campaign led some to believe he’d be on his way out of Philadelphia at season’s end. That didn’t happen. In came defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz and his 4-3 scheme. Curry was welcomed back into the fold, signing a five-year deal worth $47.5 million ($23 million guaranteed). He responded with another lackluster season in 2016 (26 combined tackles and 2.5 sacks).
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There are a lot of people who aren’t happy.
You can’t really include his coaches when you say that. All we keep hearing from them is how great of a job he’s been doing. The Eagles released Barwin this off-season, leading many to believe Curry was a shoo-in for the staring position, but now with the addition of Chris Long, it appears that’s no longer a sure thing.
You almost need a fight card or a program to keep up.
Why Curry may be relegated to reserve duty:
Recently, in a move no one was really discussing, Long was added via free agency. Last season he played in a 3-4 defensive scheme with the New England Patriots. Truthfully, he’s a more natural fit for Schwartz’s 4-3. If Long can return to his old form, something he seems to believe he’s going to do, there isn’t a guarantee Curry is in the staring role once the 2017 season kicks off.
Add to that, the 2017 NFL Draft is approaching, and the Eagles who, at this point, have eight picks may use one on the defensive line. Conventional wisdom tells us, if they do, they may address the defensive tackle position, but this is the Eagles and executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman we’re discussing. We, probably, shouldn’t expect anything conventional.
While all of these moves may make the team better (good news for the Eagles organization and fans as a whole), from a personal standpoint, it could mean less playing time for Curry.
Truthfully, if that adds to the win column, we can live with that.