The definitive piece on Aaron Curry's demise with the Seattle Seahawks has been written.
Dave Wyman of 710ESPN Seattle played linebacker for the team years ago and watched Curry's every snap, often marveling at what he was seeing -- in a bad way. Like a lot of people, Wyman though the Seahawks were getting a sure-fire prospect when they drafted him in 2009. But as time progressed, Curry's baffling play raised questions that never could be answered. Wyman: "It's not so much that his play was poor, which it was. But it was weird. ... In the first game of the year at San Francisco, he was covering tight end Vernon Davis man-to-man. Alex Smith threw a beautiful 'back shoulder' throw to Davis for a completion. Plenty of good defenders have been defeated by that throw and if it's executed properly, it's nearly impossible to defend. But it was Curry's reaction to the play that caught my eye. While the play was still going on (Davis was still inbounds), Curry slapped his hands together as if to say, 'Darn it!' He could've whipped around and at least pushed Davis out of bounds, yet he behaved as if the play was over! Weird." Noted: There were so many more plays such as this one, and Wyman runs through several of them. It was just tough to know what would make Curry play the way he played, and the instances seemed to be increasing in number.
Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com says the team felt comfortable trading Curry in part because rookie K.J. Wright was playing well. Coach Pete Carroll: "K.J. Wright has made this possible,” Carroll said. “He’s played so well. He played that Mike (middle) and that Sam (strong-side) ‘backer spot and took over the Sam ‘backer spot three weeks now starting and did a beautiful job. And we think we can really move ahead with him so it gave us a chance to at least make an effort to make a deal and get a couple more players for the future here, you know, with picks."
Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune offers these thoughts on Curry: "As I thought back, I felt as if the most productive stretch of his career was probably his first few games, when he was still confident of his abilities. A look at the stats bears that out. In his first five games, he had 32 tackles with two sacks and two forced fumbles. He finished his career as a Seahawks with only 5.5 sacks and four forced fumbles. In that stretch, his game against Jacksonville was a stunner: 10 tackles, a sack and a forced fumble. That was the kind of performance Curry, fans, staff and media came to expect. When it didn’t happen, Curry had some realities to face, and he was never really the same."
Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says former Packers guard Daryn Colledge, now with Arizona, sees similarities between the Cardinals and the Green Bay team Aaron Rodgers inherited from Brett Favre a few years back. Colledge: "I see a lot of us in them. I really do. When I look back on it, this team reminds me exactly of the Packers team I was on three years ago. We were coming off a 6-10 season, similar to what this team did a year ago. We had a young guy at quarterback who had to wait his turn behind a veteran. We brought in a new defensive coordinator and guys had to learn a new system. We added some new guys. So it took us a little while before we could put it together. It's exactly the same thing here and I swear, it's like a mirror image. If we do things right, that could be us in a couple years." Noted: Coach Ken Whisenhunt compared Kevin Kolb's transition to Rodgers' transition a few weeks ago. Rodgers had a huge advantage, though. He already knew Mike McCarthy's offensive system. He already knew his teammates. His teammates already knew him.
Darren Urban of azcardinals.com sizes up Early Doucet's quick start to the season.
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Rams' Steven Jackson is back to healthy just in time to face a Packers defense that has given up very little ground against the run. Thomas: "Four games into 2011, Jackson has 23 carries (for 124 yards) and four catches (for 19 yards), which in terms of workload is about an average day's work. Unfortunately for the Rams, if Sunday is to be a splashy return to full health for Jackson, there are easier teams to do that against than the Green Bay Packers. Don't be fooled by the Packers' pedestrian ranking of 21st in total defense. Almost all of their defensive issues have been in pass coverage. As for run defense, they rank third in the league, yielding only 75.8 yards a game. Their per-carry average of 3.8 yards allowed is tied for ninth best in the NFL."
Also from Thomas, and colleagues: thoughts on the dangers associated with the pounding Sam Bradford is taking this season.
D'Marco Farr of 101ESPN St. Louis says the Rams aren't winning enough battles at the point of attack on offense.
Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says the 49ers' offensive line can expect to see Ndamukong Suh moving around, but right guard Adam Snyder is the one most likely to match up with him. Suh: "I know they had a little bit of trouble at right guard and made a switch in the last two weeks with Snyder. That'll be interesting. I've watched both guys. I'm assuming Snyder will be the main one I see."
Also from Barrows: 49ers defensive coordinator Vic Fangio has only nice things to say about Lions receiver Calvin Johnson, noting that Johnson would, indeed, be the best receiver on the team if he played for San Francisco.
Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News says the 49ers' offensive linemen are hoping their experiences at CenturyLink Field will help them deal with the noise awaiting them in Detroit. Left tackle Joe Staley: "We're really anticipating it to be a Seattle atmosphere. We play at Seattle every single year, so our guys are no strangers to really loud crowd noise."
Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle says Chris Culliver, 49ers rookie cornerback, appears to be adjusting well to the NFL game.