Sunday's game marks the opening of a real opportunity for defensive end Vinny Curry.
After his first five seasons as a key reserve, Curry is set to be a full-time starter for the first time in his career in the team's season opener against the Redskins. He's seen snaps in all 48 games over the past three seasons, but on Sunday he'll be stepping out onto enemy territory with the first unit.
"It feels pretty good but at the same time just still prepping. Getting ready for Sunday," Curry said. "It's going to be fun."
The Eagles' second-round pick back in 2012, Curry wrangled with a knee injury all last season yet still made the most of his opportunities notching 2.5 sacks, 10 quarterback hurries, and six tackles for loss. So far, Curry has struck when opportunities appear. In the preseason game against the Dolphins, he fought his way to strip-sack quarterback Jay Cutler against talented tackle Laremy Tunsil. The play helped set up a 50-yard touchdown pass from Carson Wentz to Torrey Smith less than a minute later. Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz stated that he was "encouraged by where Vinny's gone." The key for the sixth-year veteran will be establishing consistency.
"I think Vinny Curry also had an outstanding Training Camp. He was very good against the run and pass. He was as productive as I've seen him. He was not on the ground as much as he's been. I think he's a much improved player," Schwartz said.
Curry will face a true test this Sunday when he takes on Redskins offensive lineman Trent Williams, who earned his fifth-consecutive Pro Bowl selection in 2016. Williams is arguably one of the league's most fearsome tackles and performed superbly at protecting quarterback Kirk Cousins last season who threw for a career-high 4,917 yards.
"I think it's going to be a great matchup. I think they're going to be ready to play and I think we're coming to play so it's going to be a great matchup," he said.
Curry has done all the right things up to this point. Now, it's his job to play with the same mentality that netted him the starting gig in the first place once the bullets start flying Sunday.
"I'm just looking forward to the opportunity to be out there with my guys and to have a good time," Curry said. "Preparing the best way I can and just be ready."