Speaking on the Paul Finebaum Show on Monday, former Dallas Cowboys’ defensive lineman Marcus Spears relayed that a Cowboys’ scout called Alabama defensive end Jonathan Allen “as complete as a defensive lineman they’ve seen since [Ndamukong] Suh.”
Suh, of course, was the second overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft after finishing fourth in the 2009 Heisman Trophy voting and was a unanimous All-American selection at Nebraska. Since Suh, no other defensive lineman has finished as high in the Heisman Trophy race but Allen looks to challenge that this season.
ESPN’s Heisman Watch from Oct. 24 places Allen as the No. 6 player while he received a vote as high as third-place. The only other defensive lineman to receive a vote was Texas A&M’s Myles Garrett. CBS’ Heisman Trophy rankings place Allen as fifth-overall with Tom Fornelli giving him the runner-up spot.
Had Allen jetted for the NFL this year, he likely would have been a top 10 selection as former Ohio State pass rusher Joey Bosa and former Oregon defensive lineman DeForest Buckner were both selected in the first 10 picks.
Last season, Allen recorded 12 sacks, 14.5 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles. Through eight games this season, he has tallied six sacks, 6.5 tackles for loss, two fumble recoveries and one interception. He returned one of those recoveries and the interception for a touchdown as well.
Ryan Anderson with the hit to knock the ball out.
Jonathan Allen runs it in for the touchdown pic.twitter.com/Uk2xPUcyZR
— Marq Burnett (@Marq_Burnett) October 22, 2016
Spears himself noted what makes Allen an intriguing prospect that comes around once every five years, saying that it’s how complete a player he is and that he can do just about everything. Returning two touchdowns however much a fluke is a credit to that sentiment and certainly doesn’t hurt the highlight reel.