Star Tribune

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Sack drought ends, but Allen's injury is revealed

Jared Allen has played through a seasonlong shoulder problem, according to a pregame report.

Article by: MARK CRAIG , Star Tribune

Updated: December 3, 2012 - 6:36 AM

GREEN BAY, WIS. - Like most NFL players, the Vikings are instructed not to discuss injuries. Apparently, that rule of thumb doesn't extend to the mouths of their close friends in the media.

Shortly before kickoff Sunday, Fox Sports reporter Jay Glazer broke the story that Vikings defensive end Jared Allen, his friend and fellow mixed martial arts practitioner, has played the entire season with a torn labrum in his shoulder. Allen has appeared on injury reports but hasn't been listed as anything worse than probable.

"That shoulder has been bad all season long," Glazer said. "That's one of the reasons he's down from 22 sacks all the way to seven right now."

When Glazer said that, Allen had gone three consecutive games without a sack for only the fifth time in his nine-year career. Another shutout against the Packers later in the day would have been only the second time Allen has gone four games in a row without a sack.

But in a 23-14 Vikings loss at Lambeau Field, Allen had 1 1/2 sacks, two quarterback hurries, a tackle for loss and a sound tackle of fullback John Kuhn for no gain on third-and-1.

After the game, Allen called Glazer a "good friend" and confirmed the report but tried to distance himself from Glazer's argument that Allen's production is down because of the injury. "It hasn't limited me in anything," Allen said. "Honestly, my hat's off to our training staff. I've been banged up a lot this year, from my groin to my shoulder. They've done a great job getting me there. I've never had to miss a practice for it. I never had to miss a game for it."

Vikings coach Leslie Frazier wasn't happy to hear that details on Allen's shoulder injury had been revealed.

"I don't really want to discuss his injuries," Frazier said. "Jared's played every game this season. Like most guys, especially this time of year, he's playing through something."

Allen was more concerned about the number of offsides penalties called on the defensive line. There were four on defense -- three of which were accepted -- and one by Allen on the field-goal block team, which resulted in the Packers trying and missing a 53-yarder as the first half ended.

Kevin Williams jumped on the third snap of the game, giving Green Bay a first down despite throwing incomplete on third-and-3. They went on to score a touchdown.

Letroy Guion's jump gave Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers a free play, which is never a good thing. With no consequences, he threw into a tiny passing window for a 32-yard touchdown to James Jones.

Christian Ballard jumped on third-and-12, negating Everson Griffen's 16-yard sack. One snap later, the Packers converted on third-and-7. Griffen jumped later on, but it was declined only because the Packers accepted Mistral Raymond's pass interference penalty.

"It was just lack of concentration on our part," Allen said. "Guys are excited. But you have to put that in check. There's no excuse for that."

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