Jared Allen: Cooking up sacks of potatoes

Over the past couple of years, a player introduction has always stuck out on the television screen when watching Minnesota Vikings games. That player is All-Pro defensive end Jared Allen. When each player introduces themselves and the college they used to play for Jared Allen comes up for his defensive end position and says, “Jared Allen, Culinary Academy.”

Now the question arises, is he really a Culinary Academy graduate? The answer is no, Allen is actually a graduate from Idaho State University. This is where he started 33 of 41 games for the Bengals. He was a three-time All Big Sky selection and tallied up 250 tackles, 38.5 sacks, 73 tackles for a loss, seven forced fumbles, three touchdowns, and 13 forced fumbles. He was drafted in the 4th round to the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2004 NFL Draft.

Allen spent 4 seasons with the chiefs, in 2007 he burst out onto the NFL scene as a standout defensive end. He took over the starting position and had a very successful season for the Chiefs.  He was selected All-Pro and started at defensive end for the AFC in the 2007 Pro Bowl due to his league leading 15.5 sacks. He even caught touchdown passes against the San Diego Chargers and Detroit Lions that same December. He attributed his success to his mullet and became a character right off the bat.

In April of 2008 Allen was traded to the Vikings in exchange for a first round and two third round picks. The Vikings and Chiefs also swapped picks in the 6th round. He signed a six year contract worth $72.36 million which made him the highest paid defensive player ever.

In Minnesota he has earned every penny in his contract. In his first two seasons he recorded 14.5 sacks each, including two more Pro Bowl starts. Also recieving first team All-Pro honors in 2008.

In 2010 he had an off year and recorded just 11 sacks. This was followed by a 2011 season where Allen became the all time Vikings single season sack leader with 22 sacks. He fell just .5 sack short of former New York Giant Micheal Strahan’s NFL single season record of 22.5 sacks. In week 17 against the Chicago Bears he sacked Josh McCown 3.5 times which left him just short of the record. He has the most career sacks among currently active players.

Jared Allen’s talents on the field are exceptional. However his skill doesn’t stop there. Allen is known to cook a mean sufflet and has taken over as team “cook”. His work in the kitchen has relayed into a cookbook he published called “Quarterback Killers Cookbook.”

Jared is also an avid hunter when he isn’t cooking up feasts for teammates and family. He isn’t afraid to have fun both on and off the football field. But, he knows when he straps that helmet on the motor starts and doesn’t stop until the Quarterback is on the ground spitting chiclets. That never say die attitude makes him a player that needs to be accounted for every snap of the game.

Some say the mullet isn’t just a hairstyle it’s a lifestyle. Well, when it comes to the playing field his lifesyle becomes sacking NFL quarterbacks. In 2013 look out for the mulleted bandit as he looks to beat Michael Strahan’s record and take the Vikings to the next level and win a Super Bowl.