Houston Texans: Antonio Allen To The Rescue?

Dec 28, 2014; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets cornerback Antonio Allen (39) takes the field before a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 28, 2014; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets cornerback Antonio Allen (39) takes the field before a game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports /

I tell you what — after initial dust from the legal tampering period has settled, the Houston Texans have literally cleaned up!

I’ve got to tell you, I haven’t seen this team as aggressive as they have been in quite some time.

It makes me proud to know that they still give a damn about what the fans want.

I know they listen to what we have to say; but, all in all, they feel that they know what’s best for the team.

Having a decent quarterback has been a problem for quite a spell; and, let’s face it, there’s no way an NFL team can be successful if the quarterback play isn’t there.

The Texans seemed to ignore the problem over the years, building up the team in other positions.

Now that the core and support roles have been attached to the foundation, the problem of not having a skilled signal-caller continued to glare.

It was even more so when the Texans were severely routed by the Kansas City Chiefs during Week 1 and the embarrassing, bone-crunching 32-0 AFC Wild Card Game loss after an incredible 9-7 finish to the regular season.

But say no more — the Texans went out and got their man in Brock Osweiler, Lamar Miller, Jeff Allen and Tony Bergstrom.

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But there’s one more name missing.

Who am I talking about?

I’m talking about Antonio Allen.

Yes, Allen is the newest safety in town as the Texans were able to successfully pry him away from the New York Jets.

In fact, Allen has signed with the team for a relatively-modest, one-year deal for $800,000.

Allen just had completed his rookie four-year, $2.1 million rookie deal and things were looking like he was going to remain with the Jets.

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However, things changed as he sustained a devastating Achilles’ injury right at the start of the 2015 season causing him to be sidelined for the year.

So that’s another thing we’ll have to monitor closely as fans because it’s extremely difficult to come back from such injuries.

But the upside is that he’s still quite young and he should be ready to go come training camp.

But just in case, as insurance, the Texans also re-signed veteran defensive back Quintin Demps — who’s also quite versatile — to a one-year, $1.5 million deal.

So why Antonio Allen?

His characteristics as a player describe the type of player that Bill O’Brien and Romeo Crennel look for.

What trait does he possess you may ask?

He emanates versatility.

Over the years, that’s been a recurring theme for the coaching staff, they want players that can do more than one thing.

That’s definitely the case with Allen.

Although he’s actually a strong safety, he plays the position very similar to the way a linebacker would.

In fact, there were many defensive sets that the Jets had setup — when Rex Ryan was there — where he was the third linebacker on defense and it certainly helped him in terms of his development.

But before he went down with his injury, Allen was shifted to the corner back position which resulted in him having one of the worst seasons of his career in 2014.

He’s a natural at safety and he was playing out-of-position not allowing him develop as he should’ve been.

I could even make a case as to why it was one of the reason why he blew out his Achilles last season.

Again, he wasn’t playing where he naturally fit.

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  • But now that he’s with the Texans, he won’t have to worry about playing corner as we have two talented full-time corners in Kareem Jackson and Johnathan Joseph.

    He can focus on being the best safety that he can be as that position does have a vacancy with Rahim Moore floundering at that position and being relegated to the bench last season.

    The positives of Allen are that he’s quick and light on his feet and is strong at reading the coverage and decided how best to immerse himself in the fray.

    We’ll have to see if his quickness has been abridged by his injury but lest we not forget that he was putting 40-yard dash numbers between 4.4 and 4.6 seconds right out of college at South Carolina.

    He has best been described as a linebacker that is trapped in a safety’s body.

    His 6’1,” 210-pound frame would certainly be descriptive of such a characteristic.

    A lot of the criticisms of Allen are that he’s slow to recover when he gets beat and sometimes doesn’t always make the best of decisions with his angle of attack.

    But all-in-all, he’ll be working with a talented coaching staff and I’m sure they’re going to work with him to make sure he reaches his full potential.

    After all, it’s their job to do such a thing!

    Next: Assessing The Quarterback Shake-Up

    We’ll have to see but I’m excited to see what he can do!

    Hopefully we found a mainstay — a savior if you will — at a position that has needed one for quite some time now.

    Allen, 27, had 110 combined tackles — 15 assisted — with 2.5 sacks and one interception during his career with the Jets.  He did not play in 2015 because of his Achilles injury.

    Go Texans.