What Will It Take for Defensive End Vinny Curry to Get on the Field?

Cody SwartzSenior Writer IOctober 27, 2012

HOUSTON - OCTOBER 22:  Defensive lineman Vinny Curry #99 of the Marshall Thundering Herd lines up against the Houston Cougars at Robertson Stadium on October 22, 2011 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Bob Levey/Getty Images

When the Philadelphia Eagles drafted defensive end Vinny Curry in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft, no one could have expected that he wouldn’t have seen the field yet by Week 8.

After all, Fletcher Cox was picked just a round higher, and he has been a big contributor on the defensive line.

But the Eagles have plenty of talent at the end position with Trent Cole, Jason Babin and Brandon Graham all getting significant playing time. Cole and Babin are among the best pass-rushers in the game, and Graham has been steadily improving in increased snaps over the past several weeks.

What’s surprising, though, is the disappointing play from both Darryl Tapp and Phillip Hunt. Tapp is a veteran end who is in his third year with the team after playing in a limited role the past two seasons. He took a pay cut before 2012, though, that reduced his salary from $2.58 million to just $850,000.

Tapp has registered just 0.5 sacks and two quarterback pressures in 138 snaps, and he has provided very little impact in recent games for the Eagles.

Meanwhile, Hunt is a former CFL star who registered a pair of sacks and a safety in nine games in 2011. Many expected Hunt to put up a breakout season in 2012 as a pass-rushing specialist, but that hasn’t been the case at all.

Hunt has seen a steady decline in his snaps as he’s provided less and less of an impact. He saw just one snap against Detroit and six against Pittsburgh, and there’s really no reason to continue giving Hunt the last defensive end spot over Curry.

Curry may produce as a pass-rusher and he may not, but the Eagles will never know what he can do until they give him a shot. Curry was his conference’s Defensive Player of the Year in 2011 and was excellent at both sacking the quarterback and forcing fumbles.

For an Eagles team that has gone 13 consecutive quarters without a sack, they could really use a breath of fresh air from their defensive line.

It might be time to give Curry a shot. After all, what could it hurt?