Kevin Curtis. Most people that aren't Eagles fans couldn't put a name to his face. He is what some would call a "hidden talent." He has speed, strength, explosiveness....you name it he has it. And he showcased all of it in 2007. But if you only watched the 2008 season, you wouldn't have known.
Straight Outta Utah State (N.W.A's new song) he was drafted to the Rams in 2003 being 74th overall.
He ran a hand-timed 4.21 40 at the combine that number dropped to 4.35, but the scouts knew he was fast.
The Wonderlic test? No problem, 48 out of 50. The highest among active players.
But Curtis didn't really show huge improvement until 2007 when he signed with Philadelphia and became the No. 1 receiver, finishing the year with 1,110 yards, 77 grabs, and a solid six TDs.
He had become a valuable asset to a team that had recently lost the infamous "No. 81."
Curtis's true colors emerged on the 23rd of September.
The Eagles 75th anniversary game.
The sun was high in the sky, and the yellow and blue jerseys of the Eagles made a beautiful yet almost ugly contrast against the dark green grass.
The stadium was booming with enthusiasm as the "Your Philadelphia Eagles!" was announced over the intercom.
Out came No. 5, then 36, then a large pack of defenders devoted to grabbing a "W."
Then, mixed somewhere behind the pack, the little known Curtis emerged. You can see he was full of energy, but he kept calm...that is, until the kickoff.
Emerging from Torry Holt and Isaac Bruce's shadows only six months before, he blew the Lions away with nine catches, 205 yards, and three TDs over the course of the game.
Later that year Curtis got injured (sports hernia) and only played a few games in 2008, coming away with two TDs, 390 yards, and 33 catches all year.
Low, but guess what? He is healthy for '09.
With the addition of Jeremy Maclin in the draft this year, DeSean Jackson's brilliant play in 2008, and a "revamped" Eagles offensive line, Curtis will be making open catches consistently up and down the field in 2009.
Why will this year be his best you ask?
Well, it's simple. With Jackson's speed and ability to get open deep, secondaries will have to play off him.
With Maclin's speed, he should be able to utilize the screen pass consistently and effectively.
And Curtis will be able to roam either deep, posting, slants, curls—whatever, because he will have space with the defenses spread out, leaving gaps. He is a great fantasy pick this year and he will have his best year yet.
Can Curtis be that extra push the Eagles need to get over their NFC Championship blues?
Time will tell.