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 no fan of D-line rotation that takes him off the field

Posted by: Mark Craig under Off the field, Vikings, NFC, Jared Allen Updated: August 1, 2012 - 6:26 PM

MANKATO -- Vikings defensive coordinator Alan Williams spent part of his Tuesday news conference explaining to the media how his defensive line rotation will resemble a "hockey lineup" with eight guys rotating through on a regular basis.

Apparently, he hasn't explained it to his All-Pro right defensive end yet.

"Nah, they're probably going to drop that on me toward the beginning of the season and I'll get really [mad] at them," Jared Allen said after Wednesday's practice.

Allen came within half a sack of the NFL record when he had a league-high and franchise-record 22 a year ago. He's stuck now between not wanting to rock the Vikings ship and not wanting to come off the field.

"I'm willing to do anything to win, but I don't like coming off the field," Allen said. "I work so hard in the offseason to get in the best shape that I can. My theory has always been, `You want to rest me, rest me during the week because I get paid to play on Sundays.' That's when I'm out there to make plays.

" I feel that if I'm on the field, I can make a play to help our team win. I understand you have to have a rotation and I'm going to do what they ask of me. There will be a diplomatic conversation if they ask me to roll back too much."

Allen has spent the last few offseasons training in Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) near his home in Arizona. That kind of training, he says, should allow him to stay on the field and still play at a high level, even at age 30.

"I work my butt off to make sure I can play 60, 70 snaps a game," Allen said. "There are times in a game, yeah, during a 12-play drive, when I don't need to tap my helmet, I'm looking to the sideline [to come out]. I know it's part of it. I'm not looking forward to it if that happens. But that's just because I'm a competitor and I think I can make every play that's out there."

 

 

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