Allen bags sacks title, now wants big contract
By KENT BABB
The Kansas City Star
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. | Less than an hour after the Chiefs lost their ninth consecutive game, Jared Allen stood at his stall in the Giants Stadium visitors’ locker room and pumped his fist.
Another goal had been checked off Allen’s list, this time the distinction of NFL sacks champion. His two sacks in Sunday’s 13-10 loss at the New York Jets gave him 15 1/2 sacks this season and sealed his spot atop the sexiest of all defensive statistics.
Now, Allen wants a contract to match. The first step toward achieving that goal is for the Chiefs’ front office and the defensive end’s agent to agree on how much he is worth.
Allen said Sunday he has some idea.
“A hundred million?” he said. “I want to be a billionaire.”
That was a joke. This part was not: Allen said he proved this season his play is on par with the league’s top defenders, such as Indianapolis Colts defensive end Dwight Freeney. Freeney, the 2004 sacks champion and a three-time Pro Bowler, signed a contract in June that included $30 million in guarantees. Freeney is the NFL’s highest-paid defender.
Allen, whose contract this past season was worth $2.35 million, was asked Sunday if he thought he was as valuable as Freeney.
“Oh, definitely,” Allen said.
That does not mean he will be paid like Freeney. Allen said contract discussions this season between his agent and Chiefs management were “silent,” a sign, Allen said, he believes a rich extension is not on the horizon. He said that translates into uncertainty he will return to the Chiefs next season.
“I have no clue, to be honest with you,” he said. “I love Kansas City. I really do. A lot needs to happen. We need to get a lot done.”
Allen, who is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent, said he expects the team to designate him the Chiefs’ franchise player instead of signing him to an extension. Such a designation would allow the Chiefs to retain Allen and pay him the average salary of the league’s top-five defensive ends.
Allen was selected a Pro Bowl starter two weeks ago, which he said was another of his personal goals. He has said those accomplishments have eased the disappointment of losing nine in a row, although Allen said he would trade the impressive notches on his resume for a playoff berth.
But after Sunday, more than two months since the Chiefs’ losing streak began, players will have eight more months before they have their next chance to win. Allen said Sunday’s loss was the latest in a long line of team disappointments, lowered expectations and failure.
“This sucks. I don’t even know how else to describe it,” he said. “This is absolutely horrible. It’s the Jets.
“The frustration just keeps building. It’s at the point sometimes that you just sit back and laugh at it.” __________________