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Carolina Panthers Expect Jared Allen to Start at Defensive End Against Eagles

Jared Allen is expected to start for the Carolina Panthers on Sunday when he takes the field for the first time as a Panther in front of the home crowd.

While there was some question earlier in the week, head coach Ron Rivera confirmed that defensive end Jared Allen will get the start on Sunday for the Carolina Panthers, according to Charlotte Observer's Joe Person.

As recently as Thursday, Rivera was non-commital when it came to who would start at defensive end but that seemed to change Friday and Rivera seemed confident with where Allen was physically to name him the starter.

The Panthers acquired Allen in a trade prior to Week 4 with the Chicago Bears and he made his debut against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In that game he played 35 snaps but was limited due to the back injury that forced him to miss last week's game against the Seattle Seahawks.

Allen has been one of the most feared pass rushers in the game for over a decade but has seen a bit of a decline the past two years after switching to outside linebacker with the Bears. He is back playing his natural position as a 4-3 defensive end and this hopefully can help him get back to being a dominant pass rusher. After averaging 12.85 sacks per year from 2004 to 2013, he has only totaled 5.5 sacks since the beginning of last year.

The Panthers' pass rushers are going to have their work cut out for them though against the Eagles as Sam Bradford is one of the least sacked quarterbacks in the NFL currently at eight times. The presence of Allen should give them a better opportunity of being successful in putting pressure on Bradford.

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