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Thread: Curry happy to land with Rams
-08-04-2009 #1Registered User
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Curry happy to land with Rams
By Jim Thomas
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
Please forgive Ronald Curry if his head is spinning. It has nothing to do with the Rams' playbook, or any jarring hits he might have absorbed at Camp Spags.
But after spending most of the decade in one place, Curry is working for his third team in five months. On the one hand, he's getting to see a lot of the country. On the other, he's running out of change-of-address forms. But as Curry points out, at least he's still working.
"I have a job," said the veteran wide receiver. "I'm playing football. And at the end of the day that's what I want to do, regardless of who it's for. I'm happy to be here in St. Louis, but no hard feelings towards the Lions or anybody else." After seven seasons and 193 catches for the Oakland Raiders, Curry was released in February. He signed with Detroit in mid-April, then was traded to the Rams in a move made final July 25.
Curry, 30, said he was surprised to be traded so soon by the Lions.
"I don't look at it like I failed in Detroit," he said. "I thought I was doing well. They didn't cut me, they didn't release me. They traded me. A lot of people get traded. It's a part of the game."
Curry doesn't speak so matter-of-factly about his departure from Oakland. And it's obvious Curry isn't a big fan of former Raiders coach Lane Kiffin, who was ousted four games into last season.
"I come back to camp (in 2008) and I'm fourth on the depth chart after leading the team in receptions the last couple years," Curry said. "So that kind of blew me (away). Just being kind of jerked in and out, in and out.
"It kind of bothered me mentally. I felt like I had put myself in a position to where I shouldn't have been treated like that. I usually pride myself on overcoming those situations, but for some reason I just couldn't get myself together. And here I am."
After catching 67 passes in 2006 and 55 passes in '07 for the Raiders, Curry had a meager 19 last season, his lowest total for a full season since 2003. (In 2005, when he suffered a season-ending Achilles' tendon injury in Game 2, Curry had only two catches.)
At the height of his success in Oakland, Curry did some of his best work out of the slot position. But under Kiffin, Curry said the Raiders "ran no plays for the slot."
"To me, when it's third and 5 or 6, you let that slot go to work," Curry continued. "Their offense was not for that. It was a block-first offense. You go out there, you block, block, block, block, block.
"And at the end of the day you wonder why no receiver has more than 20 yards, 30 yards. But you only threw it to a guy two or three times, and throw it up hoping he makes a big play. ... You go into some games and JaMarcus (Russell) will throw the ball 11, 12 times, and they're happy with that as long as he didn't turn it over."
Oakland threw the ball an AFC-low 421 times last season. In the entire NFL, only Carolina attempted fewer passes (414).
Indications are that the Rams will try to feature Steven Jackson and the running game under new coach Steve Spagnuolo. But offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur doesn't figure to neglect the passing game in his West Coast scheme.
Curry is a player badly in need of a career rebound, and St. Louis looks like a potentially great landing spot. Donnie Avery is the projected No. 1 wideout, but absolutely nothing else is set for the wide receiver corps.
"It is wide open," Rams general manager Billy Devaney said. "The best five win (roster spots). That's the approach we're going to take."
As for Curry, Devaney said, "He's a smart guy with size, and he's had some productive years. We're not saying he's coming in to challenge for a starting spot, or the third (slot) guy. We're going to line him up and put him in the mix."
And see what happens.
The normally even-tempered Devaney gets riled at the suggestion Curry was brought to St. Louis to be a mentor for the young receiver corps, or Teen Squad.
"There wasn't any thought about here's a veteran that can come in and help Donnie, Keenan (Burton) and Derek (Stanley) and all that crud," Devaney said. "These kids are fine. ... They know how to work, they know how to prepare. They get all that stuff.
"If we want a mentor, let's bring in Art Monk."
Sarcasm intended. Monk is the Hall of Fame receiver who last played in the NFL in 1995.
Even if the Rams don't need a mentor, Curry feels he can provide leadership. And catches.
"This is a great opportunity for me," Curry said. "They're young. I think they're really looking for me to come in and make some things happen."
Re: Curry happy to land with Rams
Too bad he's not the Curry out of Wake Forest last season.
Re: Curry happy to land with Rams
If he is expecting us to do a lot of throwing he is going to be disappointed. If we have a successful season (ie 8-8 or better) i bet we are pretty close to the bottom of the league in passing attempts. If we are throwing a lot (which is obviously not our strength) its going to mean we are behind a lot.
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