This is the latest from Vikings Now, the St. Paul Pioneer Press blog, about the Allen situation.
The Vikings are believed to be willing to pay last season's NFL sack leader a contract close to the six-year, $72 million deal the Indianapolis Colts gave defensive end Dwight Freeney last year.
Agent Ken Harris, in an early-morning e-mail, said he and Allen found the Vikings "to be wonderful people and we will certainly consider their kindness, professionalism and the parameters of a contract they shared with us."
The post goes on to say that Allen's agent is unsure whether or not his client will proceed with his scheduled visit to Tampa Bay early next week.
Now, I might be reading a little too much into this, but what that tells me is that the problem with this whole thing is not the Vikings coming to terms with Allen on a deal. The problem appears to be coming from the Kansas City end of the equation, he said in a totally unbiased manner.
Okay, I'm not really unbiased. But you knew that already.
However, Arrowhead Pride is reporting that Warpaint Illustrated, a Chiefs magazine, is reporting that the Vikings are no longer negotiating with Chiefs' general manager Carl Peterson. Rather, they're now dealing with Chiefs' owner Clark Hunt. Arrowhead Pride is also reporting that, based on what the folks at Warpaint Illustrated have told him, that Hunt's demands in a trade for Allen will be not only Minnesota's first and second round picks this season, but their second round pick NEXT season as well.
If that's the tact they're going to take, then at the risk of sounding a bit blunt, the Chiefs can go get bent. If they don't want to play fair or play nice, then the consequences will be on them.
See, the more I think about it, the more it becomes apparent that the Chiefs don't care what sort of deal Allen signs with another team. Allen's compensation, in the grand scheme of things, is rather meaningless. This is all about what the Chiefs can put in THEIR pockets in a trade for their defensive end. Kansas City doesn't care about how much salary cap space the Vikings have or the Buccaneers have or any other team that might want to acquire Allen has. This is about Kansas City getting the best possible deal they can to start rebuilding their team. . .and frankly, that's understandable.
The humorous part comes from the folks at places like the Warpaint Illustrated forums and Arrowhead Addict that seem to be under the impression that the Chiefs are going to bend the Vikings over the proverbial table on a potential Allen trade. To those people, I'll just say "sorry," because that's not happening. To my knowledge, Mike Lynn has NOT been re-hired to be Minnesota's GM, so the odds of the Beloved Purple getting screwed over on a trade like this are pretty remote.
A lot of these folks also fail to take into consideration that Jared Allen, from all accounts, doesn't want to play in Kansas City any more because he hates Carl Peterson's guts. Frankly, I can see where he's coming from. . .if the Chiefs were THAT interested in signing him long-term, they could have done so a long time ago OR put the "exclusive rights" franchise tag on him. But they didn't. Much the same as when the Seahawks put the transition tag on Steve Hutchinson (rather than the franchise tag) and the Vikings came in and signed him away, the Chiefs apparently didn't take the potential consequences of their actions seriously, and now they expect other teams to pay the price for their error in judgement.
Well, I can tell you that that team certainly won't be the Minnesota Vikings. The Chiefs are a team in re-building mode. . .shoot, in the article from the Kansas City Star linked above, one of their own beat writers says himself that they need
They need players. . .they need lots of players. . .and if they're going to be competitive, they're going to need those players sooner rather than later. So, basically, Carl Peterson or Clark Hunt or whoever is running things on the Chiefs' end now has a choice. They can either accept the deal that the Vikings have on the table for them now. . .which, by all accounts, is more than fair. . .or they can wait, let the Vikings keep all of their picks from this year, let Minnesota sign Allen to an offer sheet that the Chiefs can't match, and take the picks when Minnesota is darn good and ready to give them up.
The bottom line is that the Chiefs will NOT be dictating anything to the Vikings in this situation. They have a player that doesn't want to play for them any more and negotiating for his rights with a team that he and his agent have been very impressed by. They don't hold nearly the leverage that they seem to think they do.
After all this, I still think that it's not a matter of "if" Jared Allen will be wearing purple and gold, but a matter of "when."
Oh, and going back to Allen's character again. . .here's another good story about that that was pointed out to me by "kennyrogers" in the comments section of Access Vikings. My personal favorite part is this one:
"I told him, `You're screwing up this family's name. Now what are you going to do about it?' " said Ray Allen, 77, who lives in Rio Dell in Humboldt County.
Wait, there was more.
"I said, `If you want to be the best, then start acting like the best. It's time to be a football player only. You can't be the town drunk.' "
Jared Allen says he hasn't had a drink since.
"After the last DUI, I had to take a long look in the mirror," he said. "I realized I was throwing away everything I love, and for what? I had always been afraid to grow up and have a normal life. But I realized it was finally time."
To take a line from latter-day American philosopher Ace Ventura, it appears that Allen has EXORCIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIISED THE DEMONS!! Hey, if the Vikings don't appear to be worried about it, then why should I be?
That's all for now, folks. . .man, this weekend has flown by. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday, and we'll see you back here if anything new develops.