Eagles Set for Another Reunion with Vinny Curry
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - DeSean Jackson isn't the only familiar face back in Philadelphia.
The Eagles are set to dip into their past again by signing veteran defensive end Vinny Curry to a one-year deal, according to an NFL source. Philly.com's Zach Berman was the first to report the news.
The full breakdown is not known yet but it was described as one-year for $3.5M by an NFL source, a number that likely includes a lesser guarantee and incentives that would enable Curry, 30, to reach that number. NFL Media later amended that to a $2.25M contract with incentives that could reach the $3.5M mark.
The Eagles confirmed the signing Thursday afternoon.
Curry was with the Eagles from 2012-2017 after being selected as a second-round pick out of Marshall. He was released last year in a salary-cap crunch before relocating to Tampa Bay for what turned out to be just one season.
Curry originally signed a three-year, $23 million deal with the Bucs and Tampa Bay, which underwent a regime change from Dirk Koetter to Bruce Arians and Todd Bowles, saved $8M by releasing the New Jersey native. He ended up recording 2 1/2 sacks and three tackles for loss in his lone season in Central Florida but did struggle through a high-ankle sprain.
Curry had at least cursory interest from Cincinnati and the New York Giants but grew up as an Eagles fan and obviously has a comfort with the organization.
"I missed the guys in the locker room," Curry said during a conference call. "Obviously some of my best friends are on the team. ... Definitely had a couple different offers on the table but home is home. This felt right. This felt like the right situation. I think it was just time for me to be back in Philadelphia."
Curry was the starter at right end during the Super Bowl LII 2017 season opposite Brandon Graham with then-rookie Derek Barnett and veteran Chris Long completing Jim Schwartz's rotation. For the most part, Barnett would replace Curry as the nickel rusher at right end and took over the starting job last season before going down with a torn rotator cuff.
This time around Curry would project as depth behind Graham and Barnett and his signing could be an indication that the Eagles are concerned with the future of Long, 34, who is still under contract by contemplating whether to play in 2019.
While Curry likely wouldn't impact Long's potential playing time or role, the addition of Malik Jackson, a solid interior rusher, could keep Graham at left end in the nickel and Curry would offer insurance at both outside positions.
Either way, the familiarity of Jim Schwartz's defense tilted things for Curry.
"That played a major part," he admitted. "The whole morale, the whole situation, the whole setup, no matter how you look at it, just felt right. It feels right. I’m happy, I’m excited. I can’t wait to get to work. I can’t wait to see the guys in the locker room. I’m just excited and I’m ready to get to work, man. I’m ready to help out the best way I can."
Philadelphia also has the rangy Daeshon Hall as well as second-year players Josh Sweat and Joe Ostman on hand at DE. Sweat interestingly took Curry's former No. 75 and will now likely suffer the same fate as Mack Hollins, who had to hand No. 10 back to Jackson.
"We're working on that," Curry said. "We're definitely working on that. Hopefully, I'm back in the 75."
In his first six NFL seasons in Philadelphia, Curry played in 84 games [23 starts] and amassed 22 sacks with a career-high of nine in 2014.
“I can’t wait to get back to work. I love these guys," Curry said. "They’re truly like my brothers. It’s family here.”
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen