Asher Allen ended the 2011 season on IR after suffering post-concussion symptoms and on Wednesday he abruptly retired. The team won’t say whether Allen’s decision to hang them up was related to concussion concerns but, well, you connect the dots for yourself. He was 24 and had a fair chance of landing a job as a back-up this year even with all the additions to the secondary. Unless there were other circumstances we’re not aware of, it’s a pretty safe bet that the concussion issue was what prompted Allen to retire.
You can’t criticize a man for leaving a violent sport out of concern for his own health. Asher Allen is doing what’s best for Asher Allen and I respect that. As for the Vikings’ side of it, the hard truth is that Allen was never a big part of their plans and they shouldn’t have any trouble finding someone else who can do what they expected him to do. Allen showed one or two flashes of proficiency during his three years but never became a consistently good player despite being drafted in the third round.
Allen was feisty and held up adequately in spot start duty but that’s not enough from a man taken that high in the draft. Even had he not retired prematurely it’s unlikely he ever would’ve developed enough to justify the pick. It was a bad pick by the Vikings, pure and simple. They now hope Josh Robinson can become the player Asher Allen never did.