HONOLULU — Let’s be honest: Nobody comes to the Pro Bowl trying to win a parking spot as the best practice player of the week.
As such, Vikings DE Jared Allen, who only knows one speed during the regular season, says slowing things down during Pro Bowl week is an art form he has perfected over the years.
“You don’t want to be the guy that’s the jerk, out-hustling everybody else,” Allen said Wednesday, following the NFC’s first practice of the week.
Allen said the same rule applies for Sunday’s game.
“You kind of play it by ear,” he said. “If one of their offensive players decides he wants to ramp it up, you’ve got to ramp it up. If you’re behind, you might have to ramp it up.”
But Allen also acknowledged that everyone is well aware that the winning team receives a bigger paycheck at the end of the day, noting, “They keep raising the prize money, so eventually it’s like a game check.”
To that end, Allen said the action usually becomes more intense as the game progresses
“If their defense decides to go crazy, we have to look out for our offense,” Allen said. “So it’s kind of like everybody’s playing a chess match to see who’s going to strike first … and then it’s on.”
Allen is one of the NFL’s biggest characters. We’ll surely have more from him as the week goes on, staring with some exclusive miked-up material from Wednesday’s practice session, complete with helmet cam and all.
The always self-deprecating Allen had this to say while letting some of his teammates know his practice antics would be featured on NFL Network: “The NFL is going to lose ratings with me miked up.”