Tuesday, November 21, 2006

My Favorite Raider

My Favorite Raider
Ronald Curry has become my new favorite Raider player for a number of reasons. Not only do I admire his amazing physical talents and sheer athleticism, I respect his "team first" attitude. His unlikely career path and drive to overcome 3 major injuries (ruptured achilles tendon in 2001, 2004, reinjured achilles tendon in 2005) has developed his character. #89's passion and love for the game of professional football is undeniable.

Ron Curry Bio:
Curry was selected by the Raiders in the 2002 draft late in the 7th round out of UNC. He initially came out of college as a QB. The Raiders' original intentions were to convert Ron into a DB. After struggling to become a proficient DB, Curry was given the opportunity to work with the receivers on the practice squad. By the 2004 season, Curry was one of the star players on the team. As the number 3 receiver behind Randy Moss and Jerry Porter, he hauled in 50 receptions for 679 yards before injuring his Achilles tendon. Before his injury Curry had several big games including a 10 reception game against the red-hot Colts, a Raiders' season high. In addition, he recorded his first career 100-yard receiving game with 110 yards on six catches in Week 11 at Denver, then followed that up with a nine-catch, 141-yard performance the following week against Kansas City. He also won the Levitra NFL Play of the Week for his leaping, twisting, one-handed grab in the back of the end zone at Denver

Below are some more interesting facts about Ron Curry.

- Curry attended Hampton High School in Virginia where he was the starting at quarterback as a freshman. Hampton lost once his freshman year, and then never again until after he left. Three straight Virginia class AAA Division 5 state championships.
- He was first-team all-state as a defensive back and kick returner three times each.
- USA Today voted him as the 1st team All-American quarterback twice; he was the first junior ever picked for the position.
- Curry was twice voted the state player of the year, leading Hampton to the state title as a junior.
- As a senior, he was a Parade and McDonald's All-American, with McDonald's selecting him as their player of the year (he even won the McDonald's dunk contest and game MVP honors).
- Finished with career totals of 8,212 passing yards and 11,519 total yards, both state records
- Had career totals of 90 passing TDs, 74 rushing TDs and 22 return TDs
- One of every 8 pass attempts in his career went for a touchdown
- One of every 5 rushes in his senior year went for a touchdown
- Intercepted 8 passes in his senior year
- Curry was the starting quarterback and, for a time, also the starting point guard at UNC.
- How did he end up on the Raiders as a receiver? According to Al Davis, "we drafted him based on his high school football, which was outstanding." He was voted first-team all state QB four times.

"Ron was a guy who took to what we do, he was the one guy who could play all three wide receiver positions. I thought he could be extremely productive for us," Turner said. "The guy has been phenomenal. He was on four special teams, he handled the punt protection, he made all of the calls on the punt protection team - the quarterback background helps him there - he's as complete a football player as we have."

Scouting report on Ron Curry:
Curry is big, athletic and skilled. He is a converted college quarterback and doubled as North Carolina's starting point guard. He is well-built, muscular and very tough. He uses his big body to box out defenders and present a big target on the sideline, over the middle and in the red zone. He has enough speed to get deep and make downfield plays. He has an effortless, smooth stride. He cuts and changes directions fluidly, with little wasted motion. He has outstanding body control and is a very good leaper. He has made dramatic improvements in his technique. But Curry’s progress has been stunted and his breakouts halted by injuries. He needs more reps than most because he still is somewhat new to the position. His routes and hands are unpolished. He lacks pure deep speed and suddenness. He has twice torn his Achilles tendon and must stay healthy.

fan's webpage on Ron Curry worth a viewing.


Blogger x said...

Curry is awesome. Hope he stays healthy cuz he has a chance to be a great receiver.

2:38 PM  
Blogger Stick'em said...

I met Ronald Curry when he was in college. For a guy who has been a star athlete for a long time (he was one of those superhyped kids coming out of high school), Curry has a humility about 'em that is completely lacking from bozos like Moss and Porter.

Personally, I'd much rather have Curry running routes with his Achilles held together by duct tape, Gorilla Glue, and safety pins than have to endure Moss half assing his route and watching yet another DB take the ball away from 'em... again.

Didn't fighting for the jump ball used to be Moss' main superpower? Isn't that what he throws his hand up in the air for? Throw me the ball and I'll get it?

These days Moss just kinda shrugs about it after not even bothering to jump on most plays.

Contrast that type of performance with Curry coming back from three tendon tears after fighting just to make the squad, being a 7th rounder.

Sad thing is, Moss will probably make the HOF one day (BTW, is anyone still making the case that Moss will break Rice's records one day?) and Curry is a miracle every time he steps on the field and for some unknown reason is buried behind Whitted and Moss for playing time.

Just think what Ronald's will in Randy's body would do...

8:54 PM  
Blogger Calico Jack said...

Good points Stick'Em:

The truth is that if not for the catastrophic injury that Curry suffered in 2004, he was well on his way to becoming an elite receiver.

During that 2004 season, Curry was the ultimate WR package ... he was a combination of Moss and Porter without the baggage. He could strike deep and make the leaping, spectacular catches just like Moss in his heyday while also being able to make the tough, move the chain catches in traffic.

Curry's size, speed, toughness, versatilty, reliability, route running abilities, football IQ coupled with his strong character, humbleness, and team first attitude is truly awe inspiring.

Which begs the most frustrating question that has yet to be answered by any sane being namely why the hell isn' Curry a starter?

Barring injury, I have no doubts whatsoever that if Curry is an everday starter he could easily produce 75+ receptions for 1000+ yards. Hopefully we can look forward to seeing RC as a starter in 07 from Game #1 on.

9:49 PM  

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