Dwayne Allen hasn’t had the most successful season with the Patriots to say the least.
The Patriots acquired Allen and a 2017 sixth round pick this past offseason from the Colts for 2017 fourth rounder. The 6th year tight end came to New England with 1451 receiving yards and 19 touchdowns under his belt. His highlight performance thus far came almost a year ago, where he recorded three touchdown catches in the first half against the Jets. That was the Dwayne Allen Coach Belichick wanted on his squad coming into this season. The Dwayne Allen that decimated the Jets’ defense in 2016 would be dangerous when lined up with Rob Gronkowski. Bill Belichick envisioned Allen as being a perfect backup to Gronk after Martellus Bennett left the team for Green Bay. With his catching and blocking abilities Allen was theoretically one of the more exciting additions to the team last offseason. Or at least fans thought.
The average NFL season possesses a certain level of entropy. A team that is successful one season might not be the next. A prime example is just about every team from the AFC West this season. The same principle goes for individual players as well. Dwayne Allen was one of the centerpieces of the Colts’ offense last season. Dubbed “Pylon Allen” by BSE’s Jeff Jardine, he has been the opposite of that so far in New England. He expected a decline in numbers when he took a secondary role on the Patriots. However, this season has been disappointing, even in backup standards. Allen has caught a mere five passes on thirteen targets. An easy drop in the home opener against the Chiefs set the tone of his season. The 406 receiving yards he put up in 2016 are ten times the amount of what he has this season.
It has been tough skating for Dwayne Allen in New England, but he doesn’t seem the slightest bit defeated. With Gronk serving a one game suspension, he will likely get the start for the first time as Patriot Monday night. Allen hopes to have similar results as Gronk when he tore up the Dolphins’ defense in Foxborough two weeks ago.
A Story of Redemption
Dolphins’ defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh told reporters that it is his job on Monday night to get in Tom Brady’s head.
“My job is to piss him off and have him yelling at his offensive linemen for not blocking me, his coach and everybody on the sideline.”
With the Patriots’ offensive line riddled with injuries as of late, the Dolphins’ defensive game plan will be focused on pressure. The only way to slow down the Patriots is to send Brady to the ground early and often. They expect that with Gronkowski out this week the Patriots will focus on their run game and passing short. Dolphins’ scouts have seen Dwayne Allen’s stats this year and have ruled out him being a factor on offense.
But Coach Belichick likes to keep defenses thinking, and I can see him using Dwayne Allen without hesitation early into the game. Quick slants and cross routes down the middle of the field will be a reliable outlet for Brady to get the ball out of his hands. Dwayne Allen won’t let this opportunity to be a focal point of the offense go to waste when his name gets called.