Vinny Curry’s Reality

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Last year, Vinny Curry said he ate everything under the sun.

He was moving from an edge pass rusher to a two-gap end in a 3-4, and was trying to bulk up in order to handle double teams in the trenches. He felt slower and sluggish and joked with reporters that his gut reached “from here to your microphone.”




His weight is down just a notch this season (he currently weighs in at 277 pounds) but looks leaner and more well proportioned. As we saw on Friday in Chicago -- like when he recorded the team's lone sack on the night -- Curry is explosive off the ball and can get in the backfield quicker than any of his line mates. He has been steadily building a case for why he should be featured more prominently in Billy Davis' attack.

While there is a chance that happens, the reality is that Curry may never be granted anything more than a specialty role in this system.

 "Vinny Curry has a great pass-rush skill set.  And you see that every time he's in there.  When we're out of our 3-4 mentality and in our third down, Vinny's always in the back field," said Davis. "And he does that well.  The two-gap part of it, he's a little undersized, but getting better, and better and better at two-gapping. 

"So when you talk about Vinny and you put him in there in a four ‘I’ and ask him to take on 500 pounds of men and double team, that's not his world.  When you ask Vinny to get in the gap and penetrate, that's his world.  So we're trying to grow and put Vinny in the best positions for him.  Then you have the whole defensive unit out there, and how it all fits together is where it gets to where you have to be creative and make sure the situation and the call match the talent and we do what they do best, and that's what Vinny does best is penetrate."

In other words, if the Eagles are in base, chances are Curry won't be on the field. (And the Eagles might be looking to stay in base more frequently this year.)

Is he OK with being a specialty pass rusher? Curry let out a loud laugh when that question was presented to him.

"Of course you want to be one of the guys, one of the lead players on the team. That's everybody. Everybody wants to be the best at what they do," said Curry.

Curry was inactive for the first two games last season before finally getting the green light against Kansas City in Week 3.  He gradually started seeing more playing time as the season wore on. He played 337 of a possible 1,145 snaps on the year, or 29 percent of the time. He finished with four sacks and 11 hurries.

"A lot of patience. A lot of patience," said Curry, when asked about what goes into learning to become a two-gap player. "But I'm getting better and better at it as it was displayed this weekend. I'm still trying to better myself technique-wise, hand placement and everything. But you know, the realistic thing is those guys are 800 pounds, 600 pounds (combined). There's only so much you can do."

There's the rub. Unlike teammates such as Cedric Thornton and Bennie Logan, Curry doesn't have the body type where he can bulk up to 300 pounds and carry the extra weight well. If he were that big, one of the best parts of his game -- that lighting-quick first step -- would be lost.

Curry's line coach at Marshall his freshman year was Jerry Azzinaro. Marshall ran a 3-4 scheme that season, and Curry rode the pine. Azzinaro moved on to Oregon the following year, Marshall switched to a 4-3 and Curry notched 26.5 sacks over the next three years.

He was drafted by the Eagles 59th overall in 2012 to play in Jim Washburn's Wide-9 4-3, which asked its linemen (and especially its d-ends) to race into the backfield with reckless abandon. Last season he found himself back in a 3-4, with Azzinaro as his coach once again, and had to alter his approach pretty drastically.

It's not an ideal situation for Curry but there will be opportunity for him to make an impact this season. And the third-year player knows that improving on the two-gap aspect of his game lies on his shoulders, even if they're not the perfect size for this scheme.

"It's about will and want-to at the same time. At the end of the day we're all men. Those two guys coming at you are men, you're a man, so it's all about the knock back and the perfect technique that Coach Azz is trying to preach every day. A lot of that has to do with my part as well," he said.

"My biggest thing last year was just to prove that this second-round pick ain't just no, 'Aw man, we got him and we wasted a pick.' This year is more just taking my game to the next level."

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  • anon

    Almost makes me cry, but then i realized the tears are rain and it’s really god crying.

  • http://www.corcommunity.com/ Kelce’s Beard

    Boy, we all can argue about things until the cows come home. But at least Tim and Sheil give us these great insights into the organizational thinking. Easy to see why Davis is thinking what he’s thinking before we tear it all to shreds.
    So thank you guys, again.

    That said, it’s absolutely clear they want to 2-gap and focus on run defense with 5 in base. I guess the macro thinking is having the other 6 guys flexible in terms of cover and rush responsibilities. I don’t believe that’s debatable at this point, but it at least informs all their decision making:
    –signing Barwin, Braman at LB; drafting Smith II; signing Kaddu and Long.
    –inability of Graham to beat out Cole for starting snaps, despite a pretty general consensus he’s the better rusher
    –signing of Jenkins; drafting of Reynolds
    –dedicated, although arguably unwise, restricting of Cox’s best ability on all but passing downs; limiting Curry’s snaps for same reason

    Is a bend-but-don’t-break defense, with a rank of 12-20 in most defensive categories, the assumed ceiling for a CK defense? Void of us finding an absolute stud at critical position (do-it-all NT, OLB, S) who swings us into top 10.

    • PatrickVoltage

      Front 7 is/was not the issue facing Eagles D aside from lack of stud predator (sorry Trent). Secondary will determine how far this team can go ultimately IMHO.

      • aub32

        The front 7 looked like a big problem in the Saints game. They are probably the worst rushing team out of NO, CAR, SF, SEA, GB, PHI. So yes it’s a problem.

      • Jeff Asay

        I honestly don’t know how anyone can say that watching the Eagles pass rush. These 3rd down conversions are very much attributable to the QB playing catch with his receivers. Until the rush is collapsing the pocket and making the guy with the ball uncomfortable, like the Bears did to Nick, we will continue to see 3rd and long rankings in the 20’s.

    • cliff h-MOAR white goons

      right. and have to commend you on the work you put in this morning. after 10 or 12 posts, i’d of been like…

      • http://www.corcommunity.com/ Kelce’s Beard

        was in front of a computer for a 3.5 hr webinar presentation. It honestly kept me from going comatose
        amazing what comes out of an article entitled “Huff Shows Finishing Ability”. Great site we’ve got here :)

        • cliff h-MOAR white goons

          i dont get all the D hubbub. Kelly is coach, he isnt going anywhere. he likes what he likes, he isnt going to change. 49-31 is the same as 21-3. JJ’s defense, RIP you wonderful DC, isnt coming back. water’s wet, cant change any of it.

          • http://www.corcommunity.com/ Kelce’s Beard

            says it all

          • shady25

            Yup. Unless we strike gold on a stud OLB or safety, it is what it is. Whoever scores more points wins.

        • Dominik

          “amazing what comes out of an article entitled “Huff Shows Finishing Ability”

          In combination with a boring day at TC – yeah. We went from Huff to Braman is as fast as Huff to can Braman play to Defense to hey, we don’t have a pass rush to damn Billy D, the few pass rusher we have don’t see enough snaps. What a wild ride.

    • jpate

      But why aim for a defense with a ceiling of 12th? Chip said 2 gap 3-4 is used because it’s more effective against the run, again why orient a defense around the run in a passing league? I’ll try to hold judgement until they have the personnel but it feels like they are missing on potential studs in the passing game in Cox (potential pro bowler), Curry and BG by not using the 4-3

      • aub32

        I question the same thing. Initially the mantra was that they were going to put players in the best position to succeed. I guess that only applied to offense.

        • MediaMike

          Total double standard. They’re significantly more flexible in O design than D design. For better or worse.

          • aub32

            That’s my thing. Kelly claims DeSean wasn’t a scheme fit but used him all over the field. Yet he refuses to be flexible on defense and let some of his talented players hit the field.

          • peteike

            well, Kelly gives his coaches autonomy. Hes all about the O but probably lets Davis do his thing although Im sure he oversees it all to some degree

          • damrvrhunter

            You make it sound like it is wrong to want to not bend the scheme on D. It is his prerogative to run his team however he likes. On O he will scheme around the players on D he will fit players around the scheme neither choice is good or bad on its own hence no double standard applies.

          • aub32

            As a fan it’s our prerogative to like or dislike what he does with the team.

          • damrvrhunter

            I agree just do not call it a double standard without actually arguing which side of the “two” standards is better and why it should be applicable to the other side as well. Get it ?

          • MediaMike

            Except the point to “get” is that once the roster is set, I expect the coaching to maximize the talent on the roster for the season. If things can be done to creatively get our best 11 the best advantage on O, why isn’t that done on D?

          • damrvrhunter

            I guess we will have to disagree on who the best 11 are on D because as far as I can surmise the coaching has already decided that Curry and Boykin are not two of the best 11 for the “BASE” D.

          • MediaMike

            I hear what you’re saying here, but I struggle to see where / how the D is going to improve this season other than Chung not being here. That is frustrating, especially given the lack of ability to get off of the field on 3rd down coupled with (and all credit to the guy who mentioned this earlier) the season ending in a choke home playoff loss. I’m totally not calling for Curry to be a starter, but the D has generally not performed to the level that the pass rushing talent says it should.

          • MediaMike

            Except he doesn’t get to make those decisions in a vacuum of non-criticism.

          • damrvrhunter

            My argument is that merely stating a double standard is being applied between the O and the D is not in and of itself evidence that the approach is illogical. It might very well be but that is not proof that it is. For example I have 3 sons, 1 is raised in Judaism, 1 in Christianity and the last in SATANISM ergo a “triple standard” has been applied but does not make it illogical/BAD. Showing that SATANISM leads to a morally bankrupt soul is the logical argument against that religious upbringing. Billy D and company have come to the conclusion that the “scheme” has produced the best 11 for the base D sans Curry and Boykin, etc. while the O coaches feel largely the same way since they did after all jettison their “best” wideout from last season. And there is evidence galore that shows the Curry can not handle the two gap responsibilities and Boykin is swallowed by bigger wideouts both inside and outside. What else do you need?

          • Amar, CB who bought in

            Sorry to break it to you, but it does make it Illogical.
            It shows lack of clear approach and that you(or the person in the example) have no clue on how to raise children.

      • OldDuckMcDoc

        Chip said 2 gap 3-4 is used because it’s more effective against the run

        You got a source for this? Not doubting you, just that everything I’ve seen/heard from Davis or Kelly has focussed on disguising pass rush and winning the numbers game (via two-gapping) as being the reasons for a 3-4 so I’d be curious to see the context.

      • cliff h-MOAR white goons

        resources and style of play. think most of us that feel this way believe the Eags will invest 60/40 into an offensive heavy team. i’m actually a D guy, but in today’s NFL, think it’s alot easier to make offense great than defense. most of your top defenses have been at it for awhile. SF and SEA werent built over night. and style of play, kelly isnt going to slow it down to milk out a 17-13 game, so stats will never be on D’s side.

        • RIP illa

          “i’m actually a D guy,”

          Whaaaaaaaaaaat??? Where the hell did this come from??? Do you not remember your post pre-draft??? :-)

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            actually am. any sport, always defense. i switched up once Kelly got hired. watched enough Oregon (Lived in LA with bunch of OU grads), i knew what was coming. raised on Buddy’s boys. but those days are gone in the NFL. either adapt or stop enjoying football. though i watch fewer and fewer non-eagle games.

    • MediaMike

      I’m down with all of that from an understanding “why”, but there needs to be a better ability to get off of the field on 3rd down. I’m not sure if that will develop in the current scheme with the current personnel. I have to think they’re a draft / free agent class away on D.

    • shady25

      You hit the nail on the head. All about the safety and OLB’S. Any big, fat linemen can 2 gap. I honestly think they are going to trade Cox. He doesn’t fit. Just think of Brett Keisel and that’s where we are going with our DE’s.

      • http://www.corcommunity.com/ Kelce’s Beard

        All about the safety and OLB’S. Any big, fat linemen can 2 gap.

        well….no. not at all.

        [re: question about Hart and Allen]

        “CHIP KELLY: They both have the physical skills to play defensive line in the National Football League, but I think that the good thing for those guys is they’ve been in two gap defenses at the college level so that they have a better grasp or a better understanding than someone that just came out of a one gap system. There’s some skills that are taught a 3 4 nose tackle or defensive ends is a little bit different than a 4 3 interior guy or defensive ends, and it’s just a different skill set. It doesn’t mean that some guys don’t have it, but it’s how familiar are they with it, how good are they with their hands, have they been drilled in a certain way or trained in a certain way before they got here.”

        http://www.philadelphiaeagles.com/news/article-1/Quotes-Head-Coach-Chip-Kelly/0bf78df7-6248-4534-b9f2-658b14c4a150

  • hrtak

    Trade him for Dion Jordan :)…

    • Andy

      Curry + Graham for Jordan.

  • eaglesfanstuckinTX

    Gotta wonder if there is any trade value for a 4-3 team looking for pass rush help…

    • 370HSSV 0773H

      You would think someone would offer up a decent Safety.

      • MediaMike

        Ha ha. There aren’t many more than 15 “decent” safeties in football. I think safety is flat out the worst position in the NFL right now.

  • 370HSSV 0773H

    What’s surprising is that haven’t traded him (or Graham). Either nobody has offered a trade, they had low offers, or the Eagles haven’t shopped him.

    • MediaMike

      Mabye Ruben told Howie that the other 31 GMs in the NFL weren’t serious about trading for Graham and Curry because they’re really not trying hard enough to make their teams better.

  • Andy

    Was he ever considered as an OLB or just not a fit for that either?

    • anon

      Think he’s sort of a slave to the coaching decision– would be cruel to have him lose 30lbs, but i think he’d have the same issues as graham.

    • OldDuckMcDoc

      Can’t cover at all, and if you’ve got an OLB that can’t drop into coverage you lose one of the main things they like about the 3-4. Per Davis:

      “One of the advantages of the 3-4, when you put four big guys down in a4-3, the offensive line blocks those four big guys. It’s identified – this is who
      those four rushers are. We’re going to handle them,” Davis said.“When you do a 3-4, the fourth rusher could come from either outside guy or either inside guy, which really makes protection things and run-blocking schemes have to change and adapt.”

      Credit the Chipwagon for quotage

      http://www.thechipwagon.com/eagles/2014/08/searching-for-a-pass-rush.html

      • http://www.corcommunity.com/ Kelce’s Beard

        nice. and from a CK presser last week, which I alluded to earlier:

        “You said initially that the decision to go with the two gap 3 4 part of it was because that was a defense well equipped to take on spread offenses. Why is that the case? What about it makes it well equipped against the spread?

        CHIP KELLY: I don’t think that’s the only thing, but I think the ability of the guys to play two gaps in that you don’t have to devote you can, quote unquote, stop the run with five guys in the box as opposed to having an extra. Usually you have to outnumber them in the box, but if you do, you’re a little bit lighter in the secondary, so if you have defensive linemen that can two gap and make plays off of two gapping, then I think you can play with one less guy in the box at times.”

        • OldDuckMcDoc

          Ah, that may explain where people are getting the idea Chip wants a D that stops the run first. What he actually says here is that he wants to be able to stop the run *using less players* so that he isn’t left light against the pass.

          • http://www.corcommunity.com/ Kelce’s Beard

            If I’m not mistaken, he’s said that in the past– keys are stop the run, don’t give up big pass plays, and turnovers are key. I believe it was Nate Allen who also said, when asked about difference between this and ’12 scheme, was “[we] play the pass 1st, 2nd, and 3rd”

        • cliff h-MOAR white goons

          seemed like it was working, run defense was really good Friday vs Bears.

          • Andy

            Actually the run defense was really strong last year, allowing 3.8 yards per attempt, tied for fourth in the NFL with the Ravens. I think a couple of ill-timed 4th and short conversions by the Saints (with recency bias) loom large when we remember what they did last year.

          • anon

            2 TDs by the Vikings as well. But agree that and turnovers were the keys to the D last year, but pass rush was middle of the pack which isn’t bad.

          • RIP illa

            See I don’t like when people, or some of us fans, just blow off or chalk up the run D’s failures to the Saints game. The whole D (ok our front 7) is set up to crash down on the run. It took a team effort to make that happen, which goes to Rob’s post and which you’re not going against. Sounds like I’m arguing against nothing…I know. I guess I’m more going against the statement of our run D being really strong. I think that was more so based on our situation and who we played and who covered for who.

            Even against not so favorable teams, there were plenty of times where I though Cox flat out sucked against the run. And if it wasn’t for Cole picking up the slack, we would have been much worse. I got so tired of seeing teams always getting good yardage vs our right side of the DL, cuz Cox wasn’t holding it down. Of course he played better as the season went on, but not enough for my liking.
            Plenty of times where I saw our NTs being put on roller skates. Didn’t matter if it was Sop, Logan, or Square. The MLBs and DEs had to crash in to pick up the slack for them, and that was mainly past the LOS after a gain.
            I thought Barwin and Thornton were the best, but they struggled in the Saints game. Yet they were great for the most part, the Saints game is just a side note.

            Anyway, not really trying to argue against you. I just think that what could have been something that was cause for the term really great, was hampered or lessened by some of those factors.

          • aub32

            It’s not just the saints game. Some people seem determined to ignore the “who did we play” factor. AD was hurt. Rodgers didn’t play, allowing us to stack the box against lacy. Same thing against Dallas. There’s reason to doubt this teams ability to stop Gore, Lynch, and Lacy with Rodgers.

      • Andy

        Can he really be worse than Trent Cole dropping into coverage?

        • aub32

          If Chip’s goal is to stop the run first, then that’s where Trent has a definite edge over Curry. Also, Curry isn’t that fast. He wins because his first step is so explosive. That would be negated from the OLB spot.

          • Andy

            Fair enough. Just seems like a waste of talent, especially given how sparse the NFL trade market is.

            I guess we’re just going to have growing pains along the D-Line until we get the scheme-appropriate personnel in here over the course of a few drafts. I guess Bennie Logan would make a good 3-4 DE if Beau Allen shows he can play nose.

          • RIP illa

            Also he lacks agility and bend to rush from the outside. This would make him a not so special 4-3 DE either. However, what he lacks in those areas, he makes up for (at the DT/3-4DE position) is his ridiculous 1st step, (as you mentioned) and his violent hands…seriously violent hands.

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            right, and he only has that burst cause he isnt getting beat to S for 75 plays a game. i like Curry, but he really seems like a tweener, that fat andy loved. put him in on obvious passing down, play kill the qb, and let all the white goons do the heavy lifting on 1st and 2nd downs.

          • RIP illa

            I see what you’re saying on the “freshness” point…however, there’s just something about VC that makes me not just give in to that point 100%. Ever since I saw him at the Senior Bowl practices, there’s just some fight/spirit/whatever that makes the kid turn it up. Especially when people have said he couldn’t do something as well as others, or only did so cuz of whatever. Honestly with his lack of agility, and with the way tackles can kickout when dropping back to pass block…there’s no way I would have thought that he coulda/woulda/shoulda put up the numbers he did in college, or that he would show that well on tape, in his breakdowns. But the kid has just enough of everything a player needs and that fight, that I think he could handle not being so fresh and still F up ish for the other team.

            I digress. Agreed for the most part…don’t want or need him as a starter.

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            277 can only hold up against 600+NFL OLs for so long. now, you want to see a true fan-fit being thrown, get in 3rd and 7+ and have Curry sitting on sidelines, i’ll be going nuts.

          • RIP illa

            Truth!!!

        • OldDuckMcDoc

          From the (admittedly very limited) sample I’ve seen, makes Trent Cole look like Revis.

          • Andy

            Ouch.

          • RIP illa

            I’m not gonna say your wrong, cuz your really not. However, the only thing Cole does well in “coverage” is beat the hell out of the TEs trying to get off their line. If it wasn’t for that, or if he missed, or if it was schemed to let the TE go freely…he would look just as bad as Graham and a hypothetical Curry for this situation. Well almost just as bad as Graham :-)

          • OldDuckMcDoc

            Cole at least gave the pretence of running after the TE (at least until Chung came over and unwittingly decleated him, because CHUNG).

            If you can even get Graham pointing in the right direction in coverage it’s a win.

          • RIP illa

            LOL…so true.

  • macadood

    There’s a nice somewhat related article on Chip Wagon today too.

    Another element I think needs to be mentioned is the freshness, just when its a third and long after a few first downs the opposing O-line is a bit tired out and then BLAM Vinnie ‘Diesel Green’ Curry comes in at 100%, a guy who is already known for his speed and quickness at the position.

    without a 3-4 pass rushing star linebacker a deep rotation of players who won’t get gassed is another means of keeping the pass rush up. That being said I’d much rather a demarcus ware out there…

  • aub32

    It’s going to suck if we have to watch Cox, Boykin and Curry become studs elsewhere. I get what Chip wants. No problem. Switch to a 3-4, but do it when we have the personnel. Why stick square pegs into round holes and tell us it’s progress.

    • cliff h-MOAR white goons

      not if Kruger Allen Hart and Smith become studs in Philly.

      • aub32

        You realize you’re hoping for 2 7th rounders and a 5th rounder to become studs. I’ll put my money that Cox and Curry have the better careers.

        • cliff h-MOAR white goons

          3-4 ends/nt arent premium drafts picks like 4-3 guys. one slight advantage. i dont think Cox is going anywhere.

          • aub32

            That’s fair if you want to sell me on Logan. I’m not holding out hope that 3 guys picked that late are all going to be studs.

      • Token

        Kruger? Honestly still on that?

        • MediaMike

          He’s still the youngest player on our team. He’ll continue to develop, how much is the question.

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            thornton isnt going anywhere either. seems like DL is pretty deep. now, LBrs getting after qb and secondary, got to work on that.

          • Token

            Right now hes hoping to make the practice squad.

          • RIP illa

            Supposedly had a strong showing during the PS game. I’m not feeling him, but even Chip said good thing(s) bout him, when he could barely force himself to say anything positive bout Graham and/or Curry. Kid prolly will make it on to the PS again this year.

          • https://twitter.com/richcolton RichC, brings duck to cockfigh

            Fine. He can have Mohmah’s spot

          • RIP illa
          • https://twitter.com/richcolton RichC, brings duck to cockfigh

            terrible. can’t wait till he’s cut

          • aub32

            You can’t hold out hope forever because of youth. At some point you have to at least show flashes.

          • OddBall

            unless your name is Curtis Marsh or Casey Matthews …

        • https://twitter.com/richcolton RichC, brings duck to cockfigh

          think the great Kruger experiment is 3 preseason games away from being over.

        • cliff h-MOAR white goons

          ah, ramdomly picked 3 names. but 3-4 d-ends arent ever going to be big name players. i care a heck of alot more about OLBs in 3-4 than plugger ends.

          • JofreyRice

            I’m not sure 3-4 OLBs are ever going to be big name players in Davis’ 3-4, either. It’s aiming to be a defense full of no names, with no specialties, hoping to finish somewhere in the middle…at best. Seems like we should hope for more.

          • Token

            How dare you! Negadelphian!

    • Andy

      I think Cox can thrive in this scheme but BG and Curry are going to be really successful somewhere else.

    • DARew

      Agreed. It doesn’t make sense to waste this talent trying to force a system where they will never fit. I’m not a big fan of Billy Davis so I can’t help wondering if a better DC wouldn’t be able to transition into a 3-4 without benching his most dynamic players. In my mind, a good coach is going to adjust his system so that his best guys are on the field as much as possible. It’s called innovation. CK does it on offense, but I don’t see it much on the defensive side.

      • aub32

        My problem with Davis is the only innovation I see is terrible. Brandon Boykin playing OLB…….Graham blitzing from the slot CB position. I think some fans have forgotten about this due to the all in on CK movement. I can’t blame them. I wish I could forget seeing Boykin 1 on 1 with the LT.

        • paul from nc

          But, isn’t the 2 gap Kelly’s idea?
          Didn’t he hire Davis because he wanted to implement the 3-4?

          • anon

            Yeah i don’t know how he got called when Romeo Crennel was still around.

        • Jernst

          watching Boykin play OLB going up 1 on 1 against a LT, while being told that they like that match up, was one of the worst things I’ve ever seen. So we’re expected to accept that Boykin is too small to play CB, however, just the right size to play OLB?

      • paul from nc

        Totally agree about the innovation.
        I’m beginning to see Chip as the Bizzaro Buddy Ryan. A genius on offense, forget about the defense.

        • DARew

          I think you nailed it. Chip’s new nickname, “Bizzarro Buddy!”

        • JofreyRice

          There was a bowl game when he was at Oregon where speaking to a reporter about the defense afterwards, he basically said “I couldn’t tell you (the reporter) much about them, but they did a great job”. I think that goes beyond just letting the DC be autonomous, it’s essentially writing off one side of the ball. It’s a little concerning.

          • Token

            But he seems to be forcing a scheme on his DC now that hes in the NFL. Unless Davis has a different outlook on defense then he did I dunno. I thought he was very much about the 4-3 Under scheme.

            Chip putting size and measurable above talent is a recipe for disaster. Thats a college thought process. “Hey I can get this fast kid and figure it out later”. Thats not gonna work.

            The defense I cant imagine finishes in the top 15. They just dont have the talent. It would take a great DC performance from Davis this year to accomplish that.

            The offense I think is being just a bit overrated. Even I feel like a idiot saying that after their stats last year. However the line is a year old and down one PED addict. Is Shady ready for even more carries? What is Nick Foles? We dont know that yet. I think they are really counting a lot on Maclin being a bigtime player off a ACL, Ertz becoming a stud and Matthews contributing a lot as a rookie in the slot.

            They are gonna have to focus on being better in the intermediate and short routes. I dont see them being as explosive as last year. But I can see them being more efficient. More sustained drives. Less 3 and outs.

            One thing im curious to see is how players react to a down year. Right now I keep thinking 8 wins is about where they are. With all the extra stuff the players go through training wise etc… how will they handle a year when things dont go as well as they expect? Last year fell perfectly for Chip to get the team to buy in.

          • JofreyRice

            I think 8 wins would be a pretty big disappointment, with how the other teams in the division are in disarray. I hope they do better than that, but you certainly could be right. As much as Chip seems to hate the talk of “thinking outside of the box” or “trailblazing” he’s definitely doing things differently than most other Head Coaches.

      • anon

        Yes, Rob Ryan.

    • B-West

      That 2012 draft should have been the base of title contending teams with Cox, Kendricks, Curry, Foles and Boykin. Bryce Brown was in that class, too. All that talent, and it wouldn’t be some great shocker if Foles is the only one around at the start of the 2016 season (once their rookie deals are up).

      • aub32

        That would mean more players from the o so terrible 2011 draft would be on the team than the much heralded 2012 draft.

        • B-West

          Geez…. And somehow I’m now a little more depressed about the scheme fit casualties.

          • Jernst

            yea it sucks to miss on a draft pick but sucks even worse to hit on a pick and then watch them leave because the coach CHOOSES to get rid of good players simply because they don’t fit his preferred scheme

          • JofreyRice

            From the above article, it seems like Curry’s been getting the raw deal from Azzinaro since college. Oh well, he’s got a middling track record, Chip likes him, and he’s good at screaming. I’m 100% behind him!

      • JofreyRice

        No, that’s the draft class they have to set aside 1 billion cap dollars to sign. Everyone is going to the HOF!

        • B-West

          Man, that is definitely one of the most annoying company lines they dole out. They must not have any subtractions in their cap forecasts, getting convenient amensia about players coming off the cap sheet. Routinely being 20 mil under the cap is not good cap management. I would argue its as big a disservice to your team as being way over the cap, a la the Cowboys.

    • BuddyBall

      Waiting to switch schemes while we accumulate the players to fit the new system creates the same problem. Instead of having half a team of square pegs (Trent Cole, Vinny Curry, Brandon Graham) and round holes (the 3-4), we’d have half a team of round pegs (Beau Allen, Connor Barwin, Marcus Smith) and square holes (the 4-3, or the 4-3 under, or whatever else). Either way, because you can’t bring in eleven new starters in one year (or even two, as we’ve learned) you’re stuck with players who are ill-suited for the scheme.

      It makes sense to implement the system you want to run so the players who are going to be here long term can get accustomed to their roles and responsibilities and the techniques needed to succeed in the scheme. And then you at least have some players experienced in the system to teach it to the new guys as they come in.

      • damrvrhunter

        You sir make too much sense.

      • aub32

        I agree. That’s why I have a big problem with why we didn’t make more moves this off season. I loved last years offseason. We couldn’t replace the whole D, but we made moves. We replaced the secondary and brought in Barwin. This year they dropped the ball. So now we are stuck benching our talent and having starters out of position. If I knew the front 7 would look exactly like last year’s front 7, then I think the scheme change could have waited. At this point you’re teaching a new scheme to a bunch of players who won’t even be here. For what? So Smith II can learn as the backup? I guess it’s great that Damion Square doesn’t have to learn a new defense.

        • BuddyBall

          I don’t really mind what they did with the front seven this offseason. They like their starters along the line and now they’re developing some depth with Hart and Allen. Smith should be Cole’s eventual replacement at the OLB spot; he’s just going to have to learn the position. Given the versatility necessary to play the position well and Chip’s focus on execution, I don’t think any rookie OLB would have come in to start right away. Last year, two OLBs were drafted in the first round (Dion Jordan and Jarvis Jones) and both struggled mightily. I don’t think that’s a coincidence.

          I’ll grant that it would have been nice to add some depth at ILB, but both Ryans and Kendricks are both above average starters in the scheme, and Kendricks has the potential to play at a Pro Bowl level. I haven’t heard many people arguing that either should be replaced. (Spelled a bit more – especially on passing downs for Ryans – sure.)

          What moves would they have had to make along the front seven to justify making the change for you? The list of free agents wasn’t looking too impressive from my prospective to do much more than they did.

      • MediaMike

        I hear what you’re saying, but I’d like to see Davis be more creative with the roster he has as he has it. Seattle seems to make up roles / positions for guys just to get the best 11 playing in the best position.

    • paul from nc

      Football decision?????
      Means we don’t care what the fans think, we know better

    • Amar, CB who bought in

      Remember Chris Clemons ??

  • anon

    If Curry was a better 2 gapper could the line be Cox – [NT] – Curry? The Chipwagon had a great article on the D.

    • RIP illa

      I think Thornton is too important to our D-line for that. I don’t need Curry starting. Just need him playing a hell of a lot more. It’s alright if he’s not on the 1st team in base. The DL rotates enough (or at least should), where he could see significant playing time…coupled with pass rush situations.

    • cliff h-MOAR white goons

      NT is Beau Allen…always, from now on, Beau Allen

      • RIP illa

        That’s about as close as you’re gonna get to your “White Goon Squad”. Gonna have to change the name to “Oreo Squad” with Cox and Thornton on the outs and Allen in the middle.

        • OldDuckMcDoc

          Taylor Hart!

          Although with a name like that I’m not sure he wasn’t/isn’t more destined for a career in a boyband than on the football field.

          • RIP illa

            That name and that baby face!

        • cliff h-MOAR white goons

          my starting offense. WR cooper, Maehl, QB Foles, OL Lane, Barbre, Kelce, Mathis and Tobin, TE Ertz and Celek. RB-have to sign toby Gerhardt to a 10 dayer
          defense…i shifting to a 4-3…DL Hart, Allen, Bair, Kruger LBs, CaseyMathews, Philips Long…i dont think there’s enough white guys in nfl secondaries to fill out a starting line-up.

          • MediaMike

            Wow, that’s a horrible team.

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            i know, was just joking with RIP the other day that eagles have to be whitest team in NFL. definitely the most white DL goons.

          • MediaMike

            ha ha, nice.

          • RIP illa

            Damn…clicked on the show new reply, got to the second name in your 1st line and instantly started LMAO’n!!! That post made my day right there.

          • RIP illa

            Are there any white CBs in the league?

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            cant think of any. is Leonard still in league? he’s a safety. think in a Chappelle racial draft, whites can get N’Namdi easy enough

          • RIP illa

            We might be willing to negotiate to give you Cortland Finnegan too…depending on what you’re offering up!

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            right about now, think we’ll give you tiger woods back.

          • RIP illa

            Done deal! Ya’ll did him dirty anyway. Just for being young, rich, and horney!

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            2 things Tiger and i have in common…back spasms and running thru some Perkins waitresses

          • RIP illa

            So wrong, yet somehow so right!

          • https://twitter.com/richcolton RichC, brings duck to cockfigh

            can we talk Jason Seahorn out of retirement?

          • RIP illa

            Wow…trying to think of another white CB that played during the same era and still can’t.

          • cliff h-MOAR white goons

            ok, had to google it.
            .
            http://deadspin.com/5873045/we-simulated-the-nfl-white-vs-black-race-bowl-on-madden-so-you-dont-have-to
            .
            There are only 5 white secondary players in the entire NFL. I thought about Tom Zbikowski as a nickel or starter, but decided he’s better off pursuing a boxing career.

            -The Black Team would have no qualified kickers.

          • RIP illa

            We at least have one punter…I think???

          • paul from nc

            Plus Randall Cunningham out of retirement.
            I’ll never forget that punt.

          • RIP illa

            That’s kinda dicey…using Safeties as CBs. Plus they stole Nakamura from the Asian delegate!!! Kinda suspect, but I guess that’s what they get for taking Wu-Tang from us.
            Konichiwa B****es!

          • https://twitter.com/richcolton RichC, brings duck to cockfigh

            Old Dirty Chinese Restaurant

          • OldDuckMcDoc

            I’d imagine Dustin Fox wouldn’t take much convincing. Not sure his retirement was voluntary….

          • paul from nc

            Only if he brings Angie Harman with him.

          • paul from nc

            And you’ll get the 1st pick in the draft next year.
            Would you take the Samoan and mix it up a little?

    • OldDuckMcDoc

      Short answer would be yes I think, I just don’t see a way that Curry becomes good as a two gapper without taking away something/a lot from his pass rush ability.

      I still think Cox can be excellent in a 2 gap, even if he’ll never put up the numbers he could in a different system.

  • MediaMike

    Only 500 lbs of double team? What team has a G/T combo that is only 250lb a man, the 76 Raiders?
    How about 650 lbs worth of double team.

  • MediaMike

    The one other consideration for the entire D scheme is that of not being able to substitute. As more and more teams go no huddle, you have to lean on your base D to get the job done on all 3 downs.
    A 3 down NT who can totally dominate the point of attack and always command a double team would help in this tremendously.

    • OldDuckMcDoc

      The one other consideration for the entire D scheme is that of not being able to substitute.

      This is the thing that always drives me a bit crazy when people talk about specialists on D. It’s real easy for the other lot to keep them on the field when you don’t want them, and keep them off the field when you *do* want them.

      • MediaMike

        Evan Silva has been ALL OVER this in his tweeting for a few months. Teams that try to get out there in a base nickel are very susceptible to getting totally run over by teams that can run. Teams with a combo of good QB / great RB or great QB / good RB can destroy teams that try to play base nickel.

  • paul from nc

    Even in Kelly’s 2nd year, it seems we have more 4-3 guys than 3-4. We have no pass rush and the best rushers are only playing part time.
    If this was Andy, we’d all be screaming bloody murder.
    Does “I fit the scheme to fit the players” only apply to offense?

    • Dreday410

      Key point is “YEAR 2″ a lot of these guys are left over from the REID era but every one Chip drafted was 3 – 4 DEF….Look at how Beau Allen looked as a DT and SMITH look ok as a LB

    • shady25

      The reality of the situation is that is going to take more then 2 years to flip this roster. We have been a 4-3 team for the past 14 years with Andy. Can’t just flip to a different base scheme and think 2 years is enough to get the right players in here. Fletcher Cox, Kendricks, Curry, Cole and Brandon Graham do not fit either. I wouldn’t be surprised if a couple of these guys weren’t on the team in 2015. You have to think of the Pittsburgh 3-4 not the Texans. OLB’s generate all the pressure. Marcus Smith was the first step. Hopefully he is a fast learner because Cutler had all day to throw the ball against our first team D.

      • Breathe 21

        Kendricks comes from a 3-4 D and is better in this D than he was in the 4-3. Fletcher Cox should thrive in any D, he’s a gifted player. He fits the 3-4, he’s just not JJ Watt productive. Cox just doesn’t put as much effort into run defense as he does the pass. Graham was a 3-4 OLB in college, where he was productive enough to be a first round pick. As a rookie, they had him cover Tony Gonzales. He actually did a decent job, so idk why he can’t cover now

        • EuropeanEagle

          Pretty sure Graham was a 4-3 DE in college. The major knock against him when he was drafted was that his lack of length wouldn’t allow him to still be playing DE in the NFL. Also (and this is not related to your comment, just throwing this out there) I don’t know what Curry looks like on tape, but if like people say “quick first step and ability to get by blockers” are his best assets, maybe he should be playing OLB instead of being a 277 lbs 3-4 DE?

          • Breathe 21

            My mistake BG was a DE, Curry wouldn’t be able to cover as an OLB either. He would be best at 4-3 DE. Maybe they will play on the same team in the future lol.

        • Amar, CB who bought in

          C’mon, Graham was a 4-3 beast DE at Michigan. I was OK when he was drafted.

          • Breathe 21

            I said my mistake like a hr ago sir

          • Amar, CB who bought in

            sorry, just saw it.

      • Amar, CB who bought in

        They did not make any big moves this offseason to get more 3-4 guys either. So, what are we to believe.

  • Joe Thomas

    Curry needs to play more, he is just too productive

  • SoCalEaglesFan

    The Eagles better hope that Curry doesn’t end up on an NFC East rival like DeSean.

  • Breathe 21

    This is not even our biggest issue. The biggest issue might be starting Wolf and Caroll over Allen and Fletcher. They have much more ability. With the new rules Fletch will lead the league in flags. Allen just isn’t aggressive enough to help against the better teams and some of the top WRs. Wolf is more impactful and fearless. Jenkins will be there to help him out. Nate and Fletch are solid backups, but just not starter material.

    • anon

      I agree with comments on Fletch. Wolff isn’t ready. I don’t think he understands the position enough yet. He’s an athletic freak but he relies on that too much at the moment.

      • Breathe 21

        Mychal Kendricks relies heavily on his athletic ability as much as Wolf. He just so happens to be our most productive player. You could apply that comment to Lane Johnson as well. The league overall is dominated by athletic freaks. A bunch of athletic freaks just destroyed the Denver Broncos in the Superbowl.

        • MediaMike

          I must have missed that “production” vs. Gates last year. Kendricks really bothers me in coverage and through his number of “Trotters” vs. the run.

          * A “Trotter” is defined as running full speed to the incorrect hole on a running play and leaving a cutback lane open.

          • Breathe 21

            Kendricks vs Gates is a mismatch. There isn’t much he can do in that situation. He’s not perfect, but he’s our most productive player on D. I was just saying, if he feels that way about Wolf, he must feel the same about Kendricks.

          • JofreyRice

            He reminds me of Ernie Sims in coverage. His understanding of routes, and his ability to see where a receiver is going has been very limited.

    • MediaMike

      I’m curious as to how much Carroll’s health has impeded his ability to take a high slot on the depth chart. I have a feeling, especially if they don’t see re-signing Fletcher as important, that we’ll see Carroll ascend the depth chart as the year goes on.

      • Breathe 21

        I expect Carroll to take the job by the 3rd preseason game. Fletcher should’ve accumulated about 7 flags by then.

  • tdilla

    Good coaches get good players on the field. Curry, and an argument can be made for Boykin as well, simply need to be on the field in some capacity. If Billy Davis can’t figure out how to utilize Curry for effectively and more often, then he needs to be traded while he has value.

    • MediaMike

      I’d really love to know what the actual value is for guys like Curry and Graham. It seems like we have depth at those 3-4 scheme spots that can be just as effective as those two guys, so why not try to get whatever picks before we lose the guys for nothing. Graham isn’t going to sign enough of a contract with anybody else to get us a decent 2016 compensatory pick, so why not liquidate now? Same goes for Curry and a 2017 compensatory.

  • OddBall

    The other depressing reality is how hard-up Eagles fans are for pure defensive dominance. I can remember when our front 4 was terrifying (White & Brown et al..), the linebackers were tough (B&E and SJ) and our secondary with Wes H that inspired fear. None of the present company match up. VC seems like adequate filler but not someone you build a defense around or who in any way merits the enthusiastic treatment he gets on this board. I wish we had used our 2nd pick on the OT (Osemele) the ravens took with the next pick. He played his entire rookie year (including the SB). While he was hurt last year, he looks like a stud again this year.

    • MediaMike

      I’d rather have gotten Kendricks at the Curry pick and not had the Bears STEAL Alshon right in front of us. I almost threw a brick through my buddy’s TV because I was doing cartwheels that we were going to steal Alshon Jeffrey in the 2nd round based on Spurrier coaching that dude out of his rightful first round slot.

  • Jernst

    Yea…it just sucks to watch a team build a 3-4 that is mediocre to bad with no pass rush whatsoever, when the pieces are in place for a really good 4-3 with a well above average pass rush.

    Vinny Curry – Ced Thorton – Cox – Cole/Graham would be a great line. And, Vinny could move inside on 3rd down when we go to the nickel. So, you’d have:
    Graham – Curry – Cox – Cole all coming at the QB on 3rd and long.

    LBs would be Barwin playing the Carlos Emmons role as SLB covering TEs and blitzing occasionally, DeMeco at home as a MLB in a 4-3, and Kendricks as the playmaker at WLB.

    Tell me that’s not worlds better than wasting Cox’s best asset, hoping a 7th round rookie or an undersized NT can anchor the line, relying on Ced Thornton for any added pass rush, putting DeMeco in a slightly less favorable position where he has to cover more ground, having two pure 4-3 DEs split time at OLB so that we see things like Trent Cole covering WRs or Brandon Boykin playing OLB and blitzing LTs, all while we waste our 4 best pass rushers who all don’t fit a 3-4.

    Downright depressing.

    • Jernst

      Not only that…but if we had stuck with the 4-3, we’d have Cox, Curry and Graham as playmaking starters that are all under 25 years old. We’d basically be able to forget about our defensive line for the next 4-5 years and focus resources on fixing our other holes.

    • Token

      But Chip likes to have a scheme fit his players……..best players play……… yea. To make it all even worse, this whole transition is happening under the eye of Billy Davis.

      • Jernst

        I still believe in Chip. Davis lost me the moment he put Boykin in at OLB and instead of immediately blaming it on a stroke, he got up in front of the press and defended it for 3 weeks before realizing it was the dumbest decision ever.

        On that note, Chip has proven without a doubt he is beholden first and foremost to the theoretical philosophies that he builds his schemes around rather than being a coach that builds his scheme around his players. He’s proven that with Boykin, Curry and DeSean. Either you fit his philosophy and scheme or your out regardless of how talented.

        I think Chips downfall if he ever has one will be on the hubris of thinking you can find elite talent anywhere like you can in college. In the pros elite talent is super rare and not easily replaced.

        • Token

          Your last paragraph is exactly right.

        • damrvrhunter

          Bill Belichick continues to suffer terribly from same hubris and yet you patiently await his downfall.

          • Jernst

            A lot is covered by having Tom Brady. If Foles is Tom Brady 2.0, Chip most certainly will win multiple Super Bowls and the Eagles will be uber competitive until Foles retires. If he’s not, like all other non elite QB he’ll need some elite talent around him.

            There’s a chance that getting rid of Curry, Cox, Boykin, and Graham I. The name of a two gap 3-4 will be less beneficial than just keeping them in a 4-3 and bending on your height qualification. There’s a chance we might have had an elite 4-3 during, Foles and Shadys prime but will instead have a mediocre 3-4 just because that’s what Kelly prefers. Or it could all work out … We just have to wait and see. I think the defense is hurting by the insistence on a 3-4 when we can generate no pass rush with thT alignment and the current players.

        • JofreyRice

          I’m not ready to talk about his downfall yet, but yeah, I think there is an issue with hubris. I think that aspect of his personality probably attracted Lurie; like dissolves like. The question is, will he be able to back up that hubris?

  • paul from nc

    I hate the “bend don’t break”. We hear about our D being on the field for the most plays last year. A tough D, forcing turnovers and getting stops on 3rd down would help.

    • MediaMike

      I don’t mind that if we’re getting good kills of the other team in the red zone and holding folks to 3s, but my main issue is that we’re not maximizing the ability of the roster they put together to contribute on D.

  • Brent E. Sulecki

    Switch to 4-3. Nuff said. Easiest way to quarterback

  • Dirt

    It’s disappointing knowing how much better this defense would be if they kept the same exact roster and switched to a 4-3. If they had the bodies to do it, ok, go 3-4, but really they have 3 NFL Linebackers and 3 very solid pass rushing natural ends. They’re wasting their best defensive talent (cox) in an ill fitting scheme, and you could make the same argument for cole, curry, graham, and Ryans (remember why he came here in the first place?). You have to wonder if maybe they wouldn’t have the worst pass defense in the league if they let their pass rushers rush the qb instead of pretending to be LBs or just eating blockers.

  • Benzino

    Wow, and all of you experts were able to extrapolate all that from our first preseason game. It’s crazy to think that they hired Billy to be our D-Coordinator.
    All Lurie had to do was race over to this chat board and all our problems could be solved overnight.
    It takes time to covert players to a 3-4 and we were all told they would improve and towards the end of the season, our D played well enough to win our division.
    Doesn’t anyone remember 4-12? That was our record when we last had a 4-3.
    Am I making this up?

  • Dreday410

    Time will build…..A lot of people question Eagles 1st Pick SMITH and Hyped 2nd MATTHEWS and forgot about (3rd) Huff and after ONE pre season game Beau Allen, Josh Huff and Smith II look like good pieces and played well

  • Dreday410

    Vinny Curry will be a star if Philly lets him go…This dude has shown up every year so far when able to play had a great pre season then Eagles turn around and don’t even us him for the first 3 games…..Makes no sense……Like when they cut Acho but kept Casey Matthews who did nothing

  • william20

    The draft picks under Reid were fitted to lay a 4-3 nit 3-4 which for the life of me have no idea why they insist to run a scheme which doesn’t fit the players. Curry is the best pass rusher on this team and reds to be in a to more then a few snaps here and there. I ash they would just play a 43 and be done with it.

  • reb

    I find something odd – so he’s 277 pounds, not 300. But when faced with 600+ pounds of double team! that extra 23 pounds can’t possibly make *that* much difference. One-on-one, yeah, I can see that, but they’re talking about double teams in the article. That doesn’t strike me as a reasonable discussion.

  • Brandon

    Anyway to turn Curry into a 3-4 OLB? My man looks pretty legit standing up in that picture.