Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Allen bashes Detroit, New Orleans

Posted by: under Vikings, Lions, Jared Allen Updated: December 8, 2011 - 2:28 PM

Jared Allen speaks his mind. He's candid. He's engaging. He says what he feels. Most of the time, Allen deserves applause for his honesty and for the overall entertainment value of his commentary.

But sometimes Allen could use a bit more of a filter. That became clear once again this week during his regular appearance on his "Vikings Country" radio show on KFAN. With the Vikings headed to play the Lions at Ford Field on Sunday, Allen said he isn't exactly looking forward to the road trip.

Detroit? Not his favorite city.

"I don’t like going to Detroit,” Allen said. “I’ll be honest. It’s gloomy, it sucks. Everything is brown and then there is snow on the ground. There’s like brownstones everywhere and I’m like, ‘Awesome.’ I don’t know, I couldn’t do it. If I had to live in Detroit, I think I’d just drown myself in the river that was across the way."

Yikes. A little harsh.

"I’m not trying to be mean," Allen continued, "but it’s just depressing when I go there. There’s two cities like I don’t go out to eat or don’t do anything. It’s Detroit and New Orleans. New Orleans looks like I’m driving through a third-world country. Every time I get off the plane, I’m like, ‘Oh, flak jacket.’ I’m trying to get down. I’m like, ‘Ah, crap, I can’t carry my gun here. This sucks.’"

As luck would have it, following Sunday's game in Detroit the Vikings will next play New Orleans at Mall of America Field. You can bet Allen has made a few new enemies within the Lions and Saints fan bases. And he should consider himself lucky -- for now, anyway -- that his comments haven't caused more of a firestorm.

Allen also told fans at his radio show that he is desperate to get two more victories in the final four weeks to avoid being recognized as the worst team in franchise history, a distinction currently held by the 1984 team that went 3-13.

“Our goal right now is not to be the worst team in Vikings history,” Allen said. “We need to win two games – one win to tie it and two to beat that. That’s our motivation. So stick with us. Cheer us on. Hopefully that's not it. Because honestly I don't know what I'd do if I was on a team that was the worst in an organization. I might have to reevaluate my career, my life choice and where I'm heading in football professionally."

One other highlight from Allen's "Vikings Country" appearance this week: his praise for Lions receiver Calvin Johnson.

"I have a mantra or motto that if someone's nickname, nationally recognized by everyone, is Megatron, unless you have someone who's nationally-acclaimed nickname is Optimus Prime, we're going to have to triple-cover that guy," Allen said. "He's kind of a beast. He's pretty good. That dude makes some ridiculous catches. And you know what? Actually as a fan I enjoy watching him. Unfortunately not when they're playing against us."

 

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