Jared Allen on whether he's a Hall of Famer: 'I'm 100 percent satisfied with my career'
Allen will be eligible for the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the first time in 2021
Jared Allen certainly has a resume for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Whether he will get in on the first ballot remains to be seen. Allen, who is first eligible for induction for the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2021, had a successful 13-year career, establishing himself as arguably the game's best pass rusher in the latter half of the 2000s.
If Allen happened to become a finalist on the first try and Pro Football Hall of Fame president and CEO David Baker doesn't knock on his door, he's not going to be frustrated.
"It's not up for me to decide, but I'm 100 percent satisfied with my career," Allen said, via Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. "My career speaks for itself. If I'm blessed to get in, that's amazing, but that's the voters' decision. They'll compare and they'll figure out if I was worthy or not."
Allen is currently 12th on the all-time sacks list with 136, as eight of the 11 players ahead of him are in the Hall of Fame. Julius Peppers (fourth all-time with 159.5 sacks) and Terrell Suggs (still active with 139 sacks, eighth all-time) are not eligible for the Hall of Fame yet. John Abraham (133.5 sacks) and Leslie O'Neal (132.5 sacks) are right behind Allen on the career sacks list, but have not made the Hall of Fame, leaving some speculation whether Allen has the numbers to make it.
A fourth-round pick of the Kansas City Chiefs in 2004, Allen blossomed into an elite pass rusher on the right side of the defensive line, averaging 10.75 sacks per season in his four seasons with the Chiefs. He led the NFL with 15.5 sacks and 19 tackles for loss in 2007, the first of four first-team All-Pro selections. He was traded to the Minnesota Vikings in 2008, where Allen spent his best years at defensive end.
Allen had seven consecutive seasons with 11-plus sacks, including a career-high 22 in 2011 with the Vikings, which is the second most in a season in NFL history. In addition to his 136 sacks, Allen finished with 648 tackles, 228 quarterback hits, 32 forced fumbles and six interceptions.
It will be an uphill battle for Allen to make the Hall of Fame on the first try, not because of his career but the stacked 2021 class of eligible first-timers. Peyton Manning and Calvin Johnson will be on the ballot for the first time, along with Charles Woodson. Manning and Woodson are sure to be locks to make the Hall of Fame on the first try, while Johnson has a case to be just the third wide receiver to make the Hall on the first ballot.
Then there's the 2020 Hall of Fame finalists that didn't get the call, but should be on the final ballot. Tony Boselli, Alan Faneca, John Lynch, Reggie Wayne, Zach Thomas, and Torry Holt were notable finalists that came up just short in 2020.
Twenty-two defensive ends are enshrined in the Hall of Fame, but only five made it on the first ballot (Reggie White, Deacon Jones, Bruce Smith, Gino Marchetti, and Jason Taylor). The odds appear to be against Allen joining that list, but that's OK with him. Based on Allen's career numbers, he'll be inducted at some point.
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