Earlier this week, Vikings defensive end Jared Allen said that he and the Vikings “haven’t talked one iota” about a new contract, but you can’t say the same about his conversations with the media.
Allen told Dan Wiederer of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that he has “absolutely no idea” where he will wind up playing in 2014 after his contract, which will pay him more than $14 million in 2013, with the Vikings expires. He’s seen veteran teammates like Matt Birk and Antoine Winfield wind up heading elsewhere and knows that this might be it for him in Minnesota, something that he admits would not be the case in his best-case scenario.
“Best-case scenario would have been that we would have never gotten to this point. Best-case scenario would have been the organization would have gotten something done a few years back,” Allen said. “Well ya know what? That’s not the case. And I understand it. … I’m just happy I’m in a spot where both sides are honoring the contract.”
As Wiederer points out, the Vikings and Allen could split up no matter how this year plays out. If Allen plays well, he’ll likely be too expensive for the Vikings to keep. If he doesn’t, they might feel like it is time to move on to a younger and cheaper player at defensive end. Allen isn’t overly concerned about either scenario.
“I kind of feel like I hold all the cards in that aspect,” Allen said. “And if it doesn’t work out with the Vikings, I’m not too worried that I won’t be able to find a job, ya know?”
The lack of dialogue on an extension, which would make Allen’s cap hit significantly lower, suggests that the Vikings are just as willing to let the chips fall where they may after the 2013 season. And that makes it a lot likelier that this is Allen’s final year in purple.