Houston Cougars: Why Kyle Allen’s NFL Draft decision is perplexing

HOUSTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 23: Kyle Allen /

Kyle Allen has elected to enter the NFL draft which is a move that seems quite perplexing. The now former Houston Cougars quarterback has also hired an agent so let’s breakdown why this move is shocking to most.

Houston Cougars fans — this would have been the final collegiate season for Kyle Allen but he has elected to forgo his final year and declared himself eligible for the NFL draft.

This move coming not too long after the announcement of new offensive coordinator/associate head coach Kendal Briles.

His Career

The five-star product from Scottsdale, Ariz. began his college career at Texas A&M in 2014. He played in 10 games, completing 118 passes on 192 tries for 1,322 yards. Allen tossed 16 touchdowns to seven interceptions that season.

His 2015 campaign with the Aggies was much of the same as he played in 10 games, completed 160 passes for 2,210 yards with 17 TDs and seven INTs.

Following the 2015 season, he made the decision to leave Texas A&M. His next destination was the University of Houston.

Allen sat out all of the 2016 college football season as required by NCAA rules.

He then entered the 2017 season as the starting quarterback for the Houston Cougars.

His first game against Arizona ended in a 19-16 Cougar victory but was far from impressive. Allen passed for 225 yards with one TD and two INTs. The Cougars defense stymied the Wildcats attack to seal the victory.

Allen’s best showing as a Cougar came against cross-town rival Rice. In that game, he tossed two touchdowns on a nearly perfect 31-for-33 passing. His 309 yards and 85.4 quarterback rating would both be tops in his Cougar career.

Houston beat the Owls 38-3, scoring all of their points in the first half.

Then came the fall from grace. Houston welcomed Texas Tech to TDECU Stadium only to suffer their first home loss in 17 games. Allen was 24-of-39 for 217 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions before being benched during the fourth quarter for back up Kyle Postma.

Once Postma entered the game, the offense quickly narrowed the deficit but ultimately fell 27-24.

That would be the last start of Kyle Allen’s collegiate career. In total he would finish the season 80-of-105 for 774 yards with an even four touchdowns and four interceptions.

His career totals are 358-of-580 for 4,283 yards with 37 touchdowns and 18 interceptions in 25 games played.

A couple of reasons to wonder: Why?

Kyle Allen’s departure is puzzling as the Houston Cougars just brought in an offensive coordinator who will get the ball out quick and utilizes the run to set up the pass. These type of things along with the arm talent that Allen has flashed would have worked perfectly.

Allen also could have transferred to any school and been able to play that season because he graduated already.

The added year of growth appeared essential for Kyle Allen as he does not have much since 2015

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on tape for NFL scouts to look at. He will need to flash at Houston’s pro-day, potentially the NFL Combine and in interviews to be drafted.

Another knock is that he was successful until playing the tough competition that the SEC West brings. Each year, the Aggies play a traditionally weaker non-conference schedule before taking on their SEC schedule.

To put things in perspective about my notion, in 2015, from games 1-5 Allen would average 8.9 yards per attempt and complete 62.7 percent of his passes. Games 7 & 8, he drastically dropped to 4.74 yards per attempt and a 43.2 percent completion rate. 

From all accounts, Allen has plus arm talent but lacks in confidence.

Next: An analytical perspective on the Kendal Briles hire

He also had an above-average completion percentage while in his final year at UH, completing 76.2 percent of his passes as a Cougar.

No one knows what the future will hold for Allen. One thing is for certain, if the NFL doesn’t work out, he does have his degree to fall back on.