Last week, Allen was fined for two hits below the knee to Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub, who was expected to miss two to four weeks after injuring his knee on one of those hits. Allen defended his actions last week, saying he isn't a dirty player, but he declined to comment on the hits after he was fined, saying he wanted to wait for the appeals process.
So after another game on Sunday, Allen could be facing another fine – or maybe even a suspension – after being flagged for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. This time, Allen wasn't going low, but Vikings coach Brad Childress defended the hit.
"I know they protect the quarterback in this league, but I don't feel like that was a late-hit personal foul. I think he made a concerted effort to pull his hands off," Childress said. "I didn't think he was a late hit. Whether he appeals that or petitions that or what have you, I'm sure he's going to do it because I didn't see it that way. … When nobody blocks you, and nobody blocked him on that play, it's like going from a green light to a red light without a yellow light in between. He's full speed on the gas and the ball comes out. What's the mechanism? He let it go. Was it helmet-to-helmet? I didn't think it was helmet to helmet. As a matter of fact, you could see him pull away and put his hands up. Without being a physics major, I don't think there's any way that you can stop on a dime."
Childress said the hit was "very similar" to one that linebacker Ben Leber put on Rodgers, and Leber wasn't flagged. Childress questioned: "Which one is more heinous? I'm not the judge of that."
In fact, the league office judges those and hands down fines and suspensions based on their estimation of the play. According to a league spokesman, "a flagrant personal foul is a suspension or fine depending on the severity/degree of the violation."
The spokesman said there is no predetermined scale for fines, but there are guidelines and a first offense "may be $10,000 or more." With multiple infractions already this year, it's uncertain how much, if any, discipline – financial or otherwise – the league might dish out later this week for Allen's hit on Rodgers.
Allen didn't sack Rodgers on the play in question, but he did register a sack of the Green Bay quarterback in the game, and it was one of two safeties the Vikings had with Rodgers in the end zone. Allen admitted after the game that it was sweet to sack Rodgers after the way left tackle Chad Clifton had handled Allen in the previous two meetings between the players.
"I kind of wanted a little payback from the first game. (Clifton) kind of got me out of my rhythm in that first game, so I was trying to do the opposite," Allen said. "It was able to work and we got some good hits on the quarterback."
Allen also defended his actions after the game.
"I will have to watch film. Aaron said we went helmet to helmet. If that is the case, then that's what it was," Allen said. "I don't ever try and go out and try and hurt anyone. I just play football hard and if I get penalized for playing football hard, then that is what it's going to be. But I am not going to apologize for the way I play. If they want to throw on a target, then I'll be a target. I'm just going to go out there and play."
The Vikings this weekend travel to Tampa, a place that hasn't favored them in the past, but at least they know a little about the Bucs' personnel.
Tampa Bay has two of the Vikings' former first-round picks – Chris Hovan and Michael Bennett. Hovan is a starting defensive tackle in Tampa, but Bennett, who rushed for 1,296 yards for the Vikings in 2002, could be cut as early as today if Tampa Bay elects to activate RB Cadillac Williams from their physically-unable-to-perform list.
Hovan was drafted in 2000, the 26th overall pick for the Vikings, and Bennett was drafted in 2001, the 27th overall pick.
In addition, the Bucs' starting left tackle, Donald Penn, spent the 2006 offseason with the Vikings as an undrafted rookie free agent. He started out on the Vikings' practice squad that year but was picked up by Tampa Bay in early October and has been there since.
GRUDEN ON …
Miller has played in 35 games (13 starts), collecting 99 tackles (85 solo), eight pass defensed, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and two special teams tackles. Another reason he might be of interest to the Vikings is that he returned 109 kickoffs for 2,951 yards (27.1-yard average) and three touchdowns during his time with the Jets. Miller was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2006 as a returner after leading the NFL with a 28.3-yard kickoff return average and two touchdowns on 46 kickoff returns.