Ben Goessling of ESPN.com took a look at the Vikings defensive end position as they head into the offseason.
According to Goessling, it seems likely that veteran DE Jared Allen will be playing for another team unless he’s willing to offer Minnesota a “significantly reduced deal.”
Goessling adds that “it’s likely the Vikings are looking at the end of an era with Allen.”
Allen, 31, has been an extremely productive player during his time in Minnesota, and although his 2013 season wasn’t as good as years past, he still manged to record 11.5 sacks, 52 tackles and two forced fumbles.
As I’ve mentioned numerous times in the past few months, the veteran defensive end market forced a number of veteran players like Dwight Freeney, John Abraham and Shaun Phillips to sign very limited contracts on the open market.
Allen’s age and future production will be a question mark for prospective teams and the fact that 2014 free agent class includes a number of young options at defensive end, market pressure could work against Allen.
One speculative option could be the Buccaneers who have an obvious need at defensive end and hired Allen’s former head coach and defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier a few weeks ago.
We have Allen listed as the No. 46 player in our Top 50 Free Agents list.
Other Vikings notes:
- Goessling believes fellow Vikings free agent DE Everson Griffen may have to sign a “prove-it” contract of two or three years to return to Minnesota.
- Goessling doesn’t see the Vikings moving to 3-4 base defense under new HC Mike Zimmer.