Allen content with Vikings
The Sports Xchange
If defensive lineman Jared Allen harbors any ill will toward the Minnesota Vikings about being the subject of trade talks as Tuesday's deadline approached, he is keeping his thoughts to himself.
Allen, 31, said Wednesday that he is happy to be with the Vikings after potential deals failed to materialize involving the five-time Pro Bowl selection. He will be a free agent after this season.
"As a matter of fact, I take it as a sign of respect that they still think I have value," Allen said. "But I'm excited to be a Viking. I really am. I'm excited to try to right this ship, and I'm all in."
He expressed his feelings about the team to general manager Rick Spielman, assistant general manager Rob Brzezinski and coach Leslie Frazier in a meeting after the deadline.
"I have a great relationship with Rick and Rob and Coach Frazier and ... everybody here," Allen said. "So, there's zero animosity, zero anything. But just like with all the trade rumors weeks and weeks ago, I don't even deal with it until it comes."
Allen's contract status appeared to be an obstacle in any potential deals. He is making $14.28 million this season.
"I was never like borderline getting ready to go anywhere," said Allen, considered one of the NFL's top pass rushers. "The hoopla -- I just went about my day as normal and again, my focus is the (Dallas) Cowboys. I was watching film."
The Vikings have struggled to a 1-6 record this season. Their latest loss was a 44-31 dusting by the Green Bay Packers at home on Sunday night.
"It's time to refocus, get motivated if you weren't already and not accept mediocrity," Allen said, according to ESPN. "I'm going to be tougher on the players. I'm going to be tougher on myself. I've already told Coach, 'If you see somewhere I can improve, please let me know. And let's go to work.'"
During Sunday's game, Allen was spotted saying the Minnesota defense is the worst of his career.
"When I made that comment, 'This is the worst defense I've ever been on,' it had nothing to do with the players, nothing to do with calls, nothing to do with any of that," Allen said. "We're not performing. It has everything to do with performance, and that was the worst defensive performance I'd ever been a part of."