Allen showed flashes of his potential in training camp and in Green Bay's first two games before sustaining a sprained foot against the Lions. In fact, he has showed flashes of his potential since he was signed as a non-drafted free agent by New Orleans in 2003, but that has been about it. Allen was claimed off waivers by the New York Giants prior to the start of the 2004 season, playing in five games. He played in 14 games with a career-high 21 tackles in 2005, but the Giants elected not to re-sign him last off-season.
A Bogalusa, La., native, Allen was signed as a free agent late last April by the Packers, who gave him a salary of $703,080, including a bonus of a little more than $100,000. He made the 53-man roster and began the season as a reserve in the interior defensive line rotation behind starters Ryan Pickett and Colin Cole. Allen was not activated for Green Bay's Week 2 game against New Orleans, then hurt his foot the following week against Detroit.
Because of Allen's injury, he likely will not receive any offers of more than the league minimum for a fifth-year pro. If he does, the Packers should refrain from any kind of bidding war and part ways. If he doesn't receive any interest from other teams, the Packers might as well re-sign him when free agency begins March 2, or possibly before then, and take another look because the jury is still out.
For his size, Allen, at times, shows amazing quickness. That's an aspect that is difficult to find in big defensive tackles.
Todd Korth is managing editor of PackerReport.com and Packer Report magazine. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.