Well, We Tried.

Hope the guitar lessons went well! - Harry Engels

The trade deadline came and went and the Vikings have the same players and draft picks they did on Sunday night. But I'm OK with that.

Let me preface this to say that any disappointment I have that Jared Allen remains a member of the Minnesota Vikings should not be portrayed as a dislike towards Allen as a person, player, or Viking. Honestly, behind only Adrian Peterson, he is my second favorite Viking and has been for some time now. The truth is, I wanted him traded not only so the team could get something more than a compensatory when he walks at the end of the season, but also so that Allen could go to a contender (like Denver) and have a real shot at a ring this year. But... c'est la vie.

Wait... OMG JAY GLAZER JUST REPORTED THAT HE DOESN'T UNDERSTAND WHY WE ALL THINK HE WASN'T TRADED BECAUSE HE WAS TRADED LAST WEEK TO THE JAGUARS! OK, kidding, kidding. But I am surprised and a little disappointed that the Vikings couldn't get this done. It is true, as has been pointed out ad nauseum over the past few days, that mid-season trades- much less deadline trades- are very rare in the NFL. But I genuinely felt that teams would take a shot with Allen, particularly the Broncos, who to me made just too much sense. If you run a 4-3 (unlike Seattle), then I don't see Allen being someone who couldn't pick up the defense pretty quickly and become an immediate impact. I mean, the guy has a fairly simple job in terms of scheming- hit the quarterback, and if you see someone running near you, hit them instead. And while he hasn't had the best year, he also is playing (in his own words) on the worst defense he's ever been on. That's allowed teams to largely neutralize him in a variety of ways, most notably with quarterbacks being completely unafraid to fling the ball as quickly as possible.

But that's all a big what-if now, and I'm OK with that. I will continue now to enjoy Allen as a Viking for the remainder of the year. (There's worse things in life.) While nobody obviously knows what exactly was offered by Seattle, Denver, San Francisco, and whatever other teams were inquiring, the one thing I do trust Rick Spielman to do is leverage the best possible situation in a trade possible. Nobody thought we could get a 1st for Percy Harvin, but Spielman managed to get that and change. The terms were probably relatively simple, especially as the hour drew near to 4pm EST; a third round-pick minimum. While it sounded like he started by going for a 2nd I'd be surprised if his demands didn't lower dramatically after a while. And, for what it's worth and for whatever the reasons may have been, that remained too much for the other teams, and then 4pm came and went, and Jared Allen finished his guitar lesson as a member of the Minnesota Vikings.

We'll still likely get a compensatory 3rd rounder, based on whatever contract Allen signs with the next team he joins. That will be slightly lower than any 3rd we could have gotten in a trade, but hey- if the team he had gone to won the Super Bowl, you're talking a difference of just a few spots.

As a side note, if you're saying that this all proves we should have traded Allen sooner, then you're missing a big point: we believed we were in contention the past few years. You don't trade away blue chip players (unless they demand it) when you think you're in the process of building a championship team. Things are dramatically different when you're 1-6, your defense and quarterback situation are in shambles, and the guy is walking at the end of the season anyways. We didn't have those situations before. I will say that I thought we should have traded Allen during or just before the draft- but then again, the team thought this year was going to be a continuation of last year's surge, so I can still forgive it.

I'm less surprised that Toby Gerhart is still here. Sure, we were looking to trade him since the calendar rolled over to 2013, but the suitors just weren't there. We got close to it with Indianapolis, but then the Browns one-upped us, and it's not surprising that a team was more interested in Trent Richardson than Gerhart. Some rumors of Gerhart-to-the-Jets floated around, but then there was just nothing else. For a guy that teams really haven't been able to get a good look at over the course of his career, that's not surprising.

In regards to the other names that were floated around, namely Jerome Simpson and Kevin Williams, I never considered those real possibilities anyways. I've said it before- this may not just be Williams' final year in purple, it could well be his final year in the NFL. He's on a major downslide and I don't think he's going to go somewhere to willingly play second fiddle. And Simpson is just not likely someone that teams were really sniffing after- the guy hasn't exactly had a stellar career, and while this year has been relatively impressive for him, I still don't see teams looking at him as a true #1 WR that would change their fortunes. Not to mention, since we're apparently trying Josh Freeman out this year (or not, who the hell knows) you probably don't want to weaken his receiving corps. Unless you want to start Cordarrelle Patterson, but we all know that that's not happening. (We don't know why, we just know it isn't.)

So, it is what it is. We didn't get a 3rd for Allen but we'll get a slightly lower 3rd as a compensatory. (Well, I'm pretty sure we will, since nobody actually knows how that works.) And we'll get to enjoy him for a few more weeks. Again, there are worse things in life.

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