ESPN’s Todd McShay ‘shocked’ by Aaron Curry’s play

Oct 7, 2011, 7:52 PM | Updated: 7:56 pm

By Brady Henderson

ESPN’s Todd McShay has been evaluating NFL draft prospects since 1998. While plenty of highly-regarded college players have failed to pan out in the NFL, few, in McShay’s view, have been as unforeseeable as Seahawks linebacker Aaron Curry.

“I am shocked,” McShay told “Brock and Salk” on Friday, adding that he considered Curry to be the safest pick of the 2009 draft.

Curry-Broncos
Aaron Curry was the fourth pick of the 2009 NFL draft. (AP)

“I thought he was instinctive, he had the measurables, he wasn’t the elite elite athlete but he was just a notch below, he was versatile, tough, productive. He didn’t miss in any category that you look for at that position. He was, if not the elite, then he was a notch below.”

McShay twice mentioned the impressive instincts Curry showed while starring at Wake Forest.

“He was always — not sometimes — always the first guy to diagnose [a play] and get there,” McShay said.

Oddly enough, it’s Curry’s instincts that seem to be the most commonly cited flaw when trying to analyze why his three years in Seattle have been so disappointing. The Seahawks’ Week 4 loss to Atlanta provided an example. In the first quarter, Curry found himself woefully out of position on Michael Turner’s 21-yard touchdown run, a play Brock Huard broke down in Chalk Talk.

The Seahawks restructured Curry’s contract at some point before this season, chopping off the final two years of his rookie deal and making him a free agent after next season. Curry’s starting job was opened for competition last month, leaving him splitting time with rookie K.J. Wright, a fourth-round pick.

Those developments strongly suggest that there is a good chance Curry won’t be with the Seahawks next season.

But considering McShay’s glowing review of Curry leading up to the 2009 draft — an opinion shared by numerous draft analysts — that possibility should serve as less of an indictment on the decision to make Curry the fourth overall pick and more of a reminder that there are no sure things in the NFL draft.

As colleague Dave Wyman wrote about in a recent column, the 2009 draft was a disaster, full of first-round picks that haven’t done much in the NFL.

“Some guys aren’t able to take their game to the elite level, but I thought for sure that Aaron Curry would be a good starting linebacker,” McShay said. “He’s probably the biggest head-scratcher over the last five years in the draft for me.”

Follow Brady Henderson on Twitter @BradyHenderson

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