Jared Allen Talks Shoulder Rehab, Possible Contract Extension, Expectations For Ponder and More

Posted Jul 8, 2013

Vikings DE Jared Allen appeared on NFL Network's "NFL AM" on Monday to hit on a variety of topics.  Watch the full video above and read below for some highlights.

On if he is on track to be ready for the start of training camp:
"Unfortunately, yes; I was hoping to get a couple weeks of training camp off [laughing]. But training stuff is pretty good here. I’m ready to rock and roll."
On if he is looking for a contract extension before the start of the season:
"Honestly I’m just focusing on my shoulder right now. Like I said before, I think I’m kind of in a blessed place where both sides are honoring the contract that we signed. Whatever happens will happen, but my focus is just on football. That’s why we have agents and that’s why they have GMs; let them hash out the details but for me it’s just about playing football. I always say as long as you take care of your work on the field, the rest of it will take care of itself."
On what it was like to watch Vikings running back Adrian Peterson come nine yards short of the single-season rushing yards record:
"I felt bad. I figured he could break that one; he was like nine yards short. [I thought he would] break it, score the game-winning touchdown and call it a day. I felt bad for him, to get that close. It references back to the year before when I was a half-a-sack away from the sack record. The cool part about it was he is so humble he didn’t even realize [he was that close to the record] I don’t think; he was just happy and then after the game we were talking about it and he was like, ‘I’ll get it next time.’ I wish he would have got it, he deserved it. To come off a knee injury with so many people doubting that he should even be back in that timeframe he came back at, and to watch him do what he did and really carry our offense on his back this year was something. It was impressive, it was motivating and makes you want to even work harder in your career."
On what he expects from Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder:
"I expect him to continue to grow as a leader; that’s one of the areas where he can continue to grow at. I’ve had many conversations with him, just as far as it’s time…to take this team on your shoulders. He did that the last four weeks of the year; he called the team up, kind of dictating things like any franchise quarterback would do. You saw his play, it was great; we won four straight against quality opponents. That’s kind of what I look for him to do; I just look for him to continue to grow as a man and a leader in the locker room. His skillset is there; the guy can make every throw, he’s way more athletic than I ever anticipated him to be. He has all of the pieces; it’s time to put them together and win some football games."
On how much wide receivers Greg Jennings and Cordarrelle Patterson will help Christian Ponder:
"Greg speaks for himself. You’ve seen what he’s done against us since I’ve been here. Greg has the uncanny ability to turn a three-yard hitch into a 75-yard touchdown. I don’t know how he does it. Greg will be huge and Greg is the ultimate pro; he’ll help the young guys in Patterson and stuff like that. As far as what [Patterson] is going to bring to the table, I’m not really sure; I don’t ever judge anybody until after I see them in training camp and on the field. On paper everything looks good and barring he stays healthy, those two will be a great asset not only to our running game because they can spread the field, but obviously to Christian."
On Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph:
"People forget we have Kyle Rudolph who in my opinion is probably one of the best young tight ends in the league. I played with Tony Gonzalez for some years and I see those same types of habits in him. The kid catches everything and his desire to be the best is there. From that standpoint, I think we have a pretty solid receiving corps and obviously [Adrian Peterson] speaks for himself."