Allen Trade Goes Official

What the Chiefs and Vikings agreed upon last night went official on Wednesday as the Vikings announced the trade with definitive details on draft-pick compensation.

Amidst all the hoopla surrounding Tuesday night's breaking news that the Minnesota Vikings and Kansas City Chiefs agreed to a trade of Jared Allen for draft picks was the fact that the trade hadn't been made official. Now it has.

The Vikings officially announced the trade Wednesday and confirmed the parameters of what the Vikings gave up to acquired the NFL's 2007 sacks leader. Minnesota gave up its first-round pick (No. 17 overall), both of its third-rounders (Nos. 73 and 82) and exchanged sixth-round picks (the Chiefs will now pick 182nd and the Vikings 187th).

"The compensation for Jared Allen was appropriate and specific to this draft and we believe will enhance the future of our football team," Chiefs general manager Carl Peterson said in a statement. "No one likes to lose an outstanding football player. However, to receive three high draft choices for one player is an easy decision regarding the future of the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs concerns were for appropriate draft round compensation for the services of Jared Allen. We wish Jared the very best."

But Allen and his 15½ sacks from 2007 didn't come to the Purple on the cheap on the contract end either – as the two sides agreed to a six-year deal for almost $74 million ($31 million of that guaranteed).

In an era where veteran players can be had cheaply when it becomes apparent the team that has their rights isn't going to keep them, the Vikings gave the Chiefs plenty of compensation and made Allen extremely rich. Allen was set to receive less than $9 million this year as the Chiefs franchise player. Under his new deal, he will average $12 million a season.

While the compensation for Allen is steep, his arrival to the Vikings sends a clear message that the team is willing to sacrifice much of the first half of its draft for this season to get the one player that can make the most profound impact on the team. It also shows the aggressiveness of the Wilf ownership family to spend money and that the Vikings are stepping up the competition in the NFC North.

One player may or may not make the difference between winning a division title or not, but Allen, although coming with a big price tag, is about as close as you're going to get. If he lives up to the promise the Vikings' front office is convinced he can bring to the table, he will be worth every pick and every dollar spent if it translates into on-field success and a Vikings return to the top of the mountain in the NFC North.

He ranks second in the NFL since entering the league with 43.0 sacks. Allen earned first-team All-Pro in 2007 and made his first career appearance in the Pro Bowl, starting for the AFC. His 15.5 sacks are the second-most in a season by a Chief, and in 2006 he set a team record with six fumble recoveries as the led the NFL in that category.

Originally a fourth-round (No. 126 overall) draft pick by the Chiefs in 2004, Allen has started 55 of his 61 career games and has 13 career multiple-sack games to his credit. In 2007, Allen showed his versatility by becoming an offensive threat, catching two TD passes in the final month of the season - hauling in a 2-yard TD against San Diego and reeling in a 1-yarder at Detroit.

"This was a win-win situation for both teams and Jared Allen," Chiefs coach Herm Edwards said. "This was the right decision for our football team. While Jared has developed into an outstanding football player, this trade gives us an opportunity to acquire even more talented players who can form the foundation of our team. We've said all along that we intend to build our program through the draft and we'll continue to do that."

The Vikings will hold a press conference at 3 p.m. Central Tuesday, with Allen and head coach Brad Childress in attendance.

WEDNESDAY NOTES

  • The trade for Allen dwarfed the big news of Tuesday as the Miami Dolphins announced they had reached an agreement with offensive tackle Jake Long to make him the first pick in the draft. Miami shortened the contract length to five years, $57.5 million and $30 million in guaranteed money – making Long the highest-paid offensive tackle in league history before he ever takes the field.

  • It was believed that with Long signing, the Rams would be on the clock and able to negotiate a contract with the second overall pick. The team asked the NFL management council for permission and, apparently taken aback by the early signing of Long days before the start of the draft, St. Louis was told it couldn't negotiate just yet. A formal decision/clarification is expected today.

  • One player who doesn't look to be going anywhere is Bengals WR Chad Johnson. Head coach Marvin Lewis admitted Tuesday to rejecting a trade offer from the Redskins that would have given Cincinnati the 21st overall pick in the draft and a third-round pick in 2009 that, if incentives were met, could become a higher pick. Not only did the Bengals reject that deal, but they reportedly contacted Dallas and Philadelphia and informed them to not even try packaging trade offers.

  • Washington also apparently got rebuffed by the Cardinals Tuesday after making overtures to get a deal done to trade for WR Anquan Boldin.

  • Minneapolis was the site of a quieter NFL move, where Judge David Doty, who has presided over NFL legal business since the USFL lawsuit that claimed anti-trust, was asked to step down as the presiding judge for future NFL hearings. He declined to do so.

  • In 2005, Shaun Alexander was the league MVP and set a new record for touchdowns in a season. Yesterday, at age 30, he was released by the Seahawks. But don't cry for him. He apparently already has feelers from the Patriots and Colts – not a bad backup plan regardless of how you look at it.

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