As a rookie in 2020, safety Kamren Curl won over Washington Football Team fans with his play stepping in for an injured Landon Collins, easily cementing himself as an integral part of the defense moving forward.
However, what Curl's role exactly will be in Jack Del Rio's defense moving forward remains to be seen. Collins will be back for Week 1 and is staying at safety, despite rumors he could be moved to linebacker. Additionally, Washington added versatile safety Bobby McCain in free agency and drafted a few defensive backs, too.
Speaking with the local media following Washington's OTA session on Thursday, Curl said he doesn't care what his specific role is, as long as he's on the field helping the team.
"Whatever role they got for me, I can play it," Curl said. "Really, I just want to be on the field helping the team out. So when that comes, we'll cross that bridge."
Curl, a 2020 seventh-round pick, started 11 games for Washington once Collins went down with a torn Achilles. Once entering the starting lineup, it didn't take long for Curl to demonstrate his incredible instincts, tackling ability and knack for finding the football.
Now, with the first real NFL offseason under his belt, Curl has noticed even more of a difference in his game.
"I feel like I'm playing faster, seeing stuff quicker, anticipating stuff more because of the experience [last year]," Curl said. "I just feel like I've been playing faster and smoother."
One of the things that intrigued Del Rio and head coach Ron Rivera about Curl coming out of Arkansas was his positional versatility -- something the two coaches have stressed since arriving in Washington last January. In college, Curl played both safety and cornerback, as he lined up all over the field for the Razorbacks defense.
During Washington's OTAs this spring, Curl said he's taken snaps at both safety positions and even lined up some at nickel cornerback as well.
“He fits wherever we put him and he’s done a great job of that," Del Rio said. "He played multiple positions last year and really had a fine year. We expect him to continue to be who he is.
"He’s bright and a good football player and makes good football decisions on the field. He communicates well with his teammates. We just want our guys to work. Put in the work and develop. Roles will be determined. Right now the focus is how we do things, where you’re expected to be and get there and play fast."
Curl's play last year impressed Collins, too, who said Curl "played excellent" in his absence and "stepped into the position very well."
So, while Curl might not be asked to do as much in 2021, he doesn't mind that the secondary got a lot better and deeper this offseason at all.
"It's always good to have one solid guy at each position, but it's even better, in my opinion, to know that if one guy goes down, we still have another solid guy at that position," Curl said.