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 loves London, but wouldn't want to play for a team there

Posted by: Mark Craig under NFC Updated: September 26, 2013 - 6:32 AM

LONDON -- With all due respect to the NFL's desire to "grow the game" overseas, Vikings defensive end Jared Allen said the travel logistics would be too much for him to consider signing with a London-based team.

Granted, Allen will be long retired by the time the league would have a team in London, if it ever does put one here. But when a multiple All-Pro defensive end says he'd say no thanks to signing with a London-based team because it would be too damaging on his life and career, it's a decent bet that he speaks for many more current and former star players of his level.

I asked Allen if the NFL could place a team in London. Some reports have suggested that could happen as early as 2020.   

"I mean you could. I think the fan base and stuff could sustain it, but it's a lot to ask for a player," Allen said. "Just personally speaking, I probably wouldn't sign over here because of the fact that every road trip is going to be three, four, five days away from your family. And then you got to starting thinking about productivity of lives as far as now I'm going to play a west coast game and you got an 11-hour plane ride.

"I think logistically it's tough, especially on the players and family members and stuff like that. Obviously, it would be fun as an experience to hang out in Europe. Why not? Especially in the U.K. But I don't know about that. You're looking at a minimum of a six-hour flight every road trip. That would be tough."

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