Some would argue that Sunday’s loss to the Chicago Bears was the end of the Vikings season in terms of participating in any week 18 games. What we know for sure is that Jared Allen’s blind side block ended Lance Louis’s season.
On an Antoine Winfield interception, Allen launched his body at the offensive lineman in an attempt to block during the return, but the result was a knee injury that has brought more criticism Allen’s way than he has seen since he did this to Matt Schaub in 2008.
The hits to Schaub resulted in the NFL making a rule change the following offseason, but this time around Allen’s hit on Louis was one that is already illegal despite the fact that he wasn’t penalized for it. Allen can expect a hefty fine from the NFL and plenty of jabs from the team that currently leads the NFC North but now has to finish out the regular season without their best offensive lineman.
Head Coach Lovie Smith offered up his take on Monday.
“Jared Allen plays the game a certain way, a good player in our league,” said Smith. “I think there are some plays when you look at them again, you say, ‘Hey, we could have done without that.’ I think our game could do without that play. We have an injured player right now based on it. I think he could have gotten blocked a little bit differently, but that’s about all I can probably say about it. I’m sure the league will look at it and give another opinion about what they think.”
I can’t honestly say that I believe Allen is a dirty player that intentionally hurt Louis, and he echoed that in his post-game comments about the play and his apology to Louis and his family, but I also think the play is one that the NFL could indeed do without and that Allen will (and should) hear from the league office.
What do you think Allen should expect provided the evidence and testimony mounting against him on this one?