Two former Chicago Bears voted as Hall of Fame semifinalists
By Peter Jurich
NFC North legend Jared Allen is a semifinalist for a third consecutive year
Next on this list is defensive end Jared Allen, who despite being a legend for the NFC North rival Minnesota Vikings, spent one and a half seasons with Chicago where he helped cement his Hall of Fame-caliber career.
Jared Allen’s time as a Bear came at the very end of his career, after spending four years as a Kansas City Chief and six more as a Viking, but he was still productive and consistent as a Monster of the Midway. As a Chicago Bear, Allen started in all 18 possible games (he was traded to the Carolina Panthers after six games in 2015), and recorded 38 solo tackles, 5.5 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, two fumbles forced and recovered, five pass deflections, and one interception.
While these numbers in Chicago are solid for a 32-year-old defensive end, his numbers as a younger player really cement his Hall of Fame candidacy.
In 13 total seasons as a professional, Jared Allen logged 136 sacks, 503 solo tackles, and 173 tackles for loss, as well as 32 forced fumbles and 25 turnovers between recoveries and interceptions.
Allen’s sack total puts him at 12th in all-time career sacks, only 1.5 behind two Hall of Famers tied at 10th in Richard Dent and John Randle, ironic for a player who played for both the Bears and the Vikings.
Allen is also only one of five players to record 22 or more sacks in a single season, hitting the mark in 2011 as a member of the Vikings. That season, Allen was selected as a First Team All-Pro defensive end, the fourth and final time of his career.
Jared Allen is one of five edge rushers elected as a semifinalist, a class that also includes James Harrison, DeMarcus Ware, Dwight Freeney, and Robert Mathis. Ware is the only other member of this class who recorded 20 or more sacks in a single season, and the only player with more career sacks than Allen.
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As one of the most underrated pass rushers not only of the early 2000s but in NFL history, it is clear that Jared Allen has the statistical resume to end up in Canton, Ohio. A true edge rusher great, Allen’s time with the Bears was short-lived but put him in conversation with some of the best defensive linemen in Bears’ history.