The name Vinny usually reminds someone of a strong armed quarterback from Miami, an Italian guy from New Jersey, or that movie that where Marisa Tomei won an Oscar.
Vinny Curry, defensive end from Marshall, rarely enters the conversation. For now, anyway.
WHAT HE DOES
The 6’3″, 265 pound product from Neptune, New Jersey has truly been out of this world in 2011 for the Thundering Herd of Marshall, despite not a lot of media attention.
During a press conference to announce his return to Marshall for his senior season, Curry stated, “Since I’ve been playing football, I’ve been analyzing the game, been a student of the game. Just really awaiting my opportunity to be in the league.”
He certainly has made the most of his decision, turning in some fantastic performances to start the 2011 season.
To put it bluntly, Curry has been an absolute menace, especially on third down. Through seven games, Curry has racked up 17 tackles for loss, including 9.5 sacks. He also has 3 hurries, 3 fumbles forced, and has blocked two kicks.
However, Curry isn’t all about what shows up in the box score.
Curry told the Herald-Dispatch, “I’m not looking to get all those stats. I’m looking to get a championship. I’m a team player all the way. I’m far from selfish.”
A championship is still in the works, but those stats do get him some attention – especially from opposing offenses.
“Double-teams, triple-teams, quadruple teams. Because if you do that to me that’s going to leave one of the other soldiers open.”
HOW HE DOES IT
In a word, Curry is sudden. He changes direction very well, often avoiding blocks outright and still managing to chase down the ball-carrier or quarterback. He has the speed (estimated at 4.75) to get around the edge, while having enough strength to use a conversion move on occasion.
His motor and great work with hands also help create pressure on the entire offense.
Curry gets very high marks from his coaches, giving him all the credit for doing whatever they ask him to do. That would certainly help if he goes to a team like the Patriots where a position change could be in order.
He isn’t a perfect prospect though – there are almost always a few warts. If he is going to play 3-4 OLB, he will need to be able to shed blockers with more consistency.
We also have rarely seen Curry beat a double-team from the DE position, especially against higher caliber teams. That won’t be a problem if Curry is strictly a 3-4 OLB. As a 4-3 DE, however, it warrants mentioning.
Barring injury or unforeseen circumstances, Curry is a 1st-rounder. His blend of size, speed, power, and motor is a rare commodity and shouldn’t last long past the halfway point in the 1st round.
We’re looking forward to scouting Curry in some All-Star games this winter, where we can see him play against some more top offensive linemen. We expect this will only solidify his current spot as our #2 defensive end.
Consider Vinny Testaverde, Vinny Guadagnino, and My Cousin Vinny officially put on notice – you’re about to have some company.