Updates from Thursday, March 27
According to contract details obtained by USA TODAY Sports, Allen didn’t receive a signing bonus and will make just $3 million in base salary this year. In 2015, he’s due an $11.5 million roster bonus – fully guaranteed as of April 9 this year – and $1 million base salary.
In 2016, Allen has a non-guaranteed base salary of $8.5 million. The last year of the deal would void June 1, 2017, if Allen has 12 or more sacks in any of the three previous seasons. If not, his base salary that is season is scheduled for $8 million.
The pay-as-you-go deal means Allen’s cap numbers are slated to equal his cap compensation: $3 million in 2014, $12.5 million in 2015, $8.5 million in 2016 and $8 million in 2017.
Fresh off his seventh straight double-digit sack season, veteran defensive end Jared Allen has agreed to terms with the Chicago Bears, the team announced.
LM: #Bears bolster defense by agreeing to terms on 4-year deal with DE Jared Allen, one of NFL's most prolific pass rushers.— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) March 26, 2014
LM: #Bears confirm that new DE Jared Allen will wear jersey No. 69 with team.— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) March 26, 2014
Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports provided contract details:
Jared Allen deal is $32m over 4 years but voids down to a $24m deal over 3 with $15.5m guaranteed, per source.— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) March 26, 2014
Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports added more information:
Allen's deal includes guaranteed base salaries in the 1st 2yrs as well as a full guaranteed roster bonus due next March— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) March 26, 2014
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport added an interesting note about the money aspect:
Garafolo also mentioned that the deal trumped anything retirement could have offered the talented pass-rusher:
That deal Allen got was better than the best offer retirement could muster. And that was $0 fully guaranteed.— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) March 26, 2014
According to John Mullin of CSN, the team will announce Allen next week:
#Bears will formally introduce new DE Jared Allen next Monday— John Mullin (@CSNMoonMullin) March 26, 2014
Sean Jensen of Thrive Sports and Ed Werder of ESPN bring Allen's thoughts on the deal:
Text from Jared Allen, who says Bears came in at the last minute. Their $15.5M guarantee put him between DeMarcus Ware and Julius Peppers.— Ed Werder (@Edwerderespn) March 26, 2014
Tom Pelissero of USA Today provides more of Allen's thoughts:
Text from Jared Allen: "I'm excited. I have been blessed to (play) for some amazing franchise(s) and the Good Lord has blessed me again."— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) March 26, 2014
EAG Sports Management, who represents the defensive end, also released a statement from the talented pass-rusher:
"I'd like to take a moment to thank my former teammates, coaches and the staff at the Minnesota Vikings for all of their inspiring work and dedication. Perhaps more importantly I would like to thank the fans and the Minnesota community. I can only hope that I have left with you all, with even a fraction of the positive support and impact you have had on my life, my foundation and my family. I am very excited about this next chapter in my career with the Chicago Bears and can't wait to see what the future holds for us. God bless."
The Vikings also tweeted a goodbye to Allen for his years of service:
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman also issued a statement on Allen's departure (via the Star-Tribune):
We wish Jared the best as he turns to the next chapter of his NFL career. Not only was he an outstanding player on the field for the Vikings over his six seasons, but he also helped change lives in our community through his charitable work. Jared will always be a fan favorite, and we hope he stays involved with the Vikings franchise in years to come.
Allen, who began his career as a dominant force with the Kansas City Chiefs, has spent the last six seasons with the Vikings. Simply put, he is as terrifying for quarterbacks as he is hilarious and talented at growing mullets.
In 2013, he recorded 11.5 sacks. It was his lowest total since 2010, and while he may not be the same player who recorded an NFL-high 22.0 quarterback takedowns during the 2011 season, he still has plenty left in the tank. He started all 96 regular-season games as a member of the Vikings and can still rush the QB at a very high level.
However, as the Bears' Twitter feed was quick to point out, Allen had been extremely good in the years prior to last season:
LM: New #Bears DE Jared Allen's 128.5 sacks are most by any player since he entered NFL in 2004.— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) March 26, 2014
Zach Zaidman of CBS 2 added the general manager's take:
#Bears GM Phil Emery on Allen: "This is another important step in our continued efforts to build our team towards a championship level."— Zach Zaidman (@ZachZaidman) March 26, 2014
Allen had a strong relationship with Minnesota and the fans loved him, but when the Vikings gave a contract extension to fellow defensive end Brian Robison and subsequently Everson Griffen this offseason, it became clear that his days in the Twin Cities were numbered.
Veteran linebacker Chad Greenway helped explain the void Allen's departure will leave in the defense, via ESPN 99.1:
.@Vikings Greenway on Jared Allen: "We obviously want him back. He really changed our defense. Would be different & void with him gone."— ESPN 99.1 (@ESPN991SF) March 4, 2014
Still, though, it's clear there will be no hard feelings between the two sides. When talk of him leaving started to strengthen, Allen expressed his gratitude toward the team, via CBS Sports' Josh Katzowitz.
"Wherever I go, when I retire, I'm going to call them and say, 'Hey, let me sign a one-day contract," Allen said. "Minnesota will always be in my heart."
How may sacks will Jared Allen record during the 2014 season?
The Bears are going to be a compelling team to watch as we progress through free agency and the upcoming draft after they secured Allen to replace Julius Peppers.
Allen figures to continue causing havoc despite the different uniform. The 31-year-old ranks 12th on the NFL's list of career sack leaders with 128.5, but with another double-digit showing in 2014, he could catch Jason Taylor, who is No. 6 on the list.
With 30 career forced fumbles and proven durability throughout his 10-year NFL career, Allen is still undeniably a force off the edge. His presence will immediately be felt, and there's no reason to believe he won't continue piling up sacks over the next few years.