The New England Patriots signed former Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive tackle Beau Allen last week. Allen will almost certainly replace the departed Danny Shelton on the Patriots’ defensive line.
Shelton signed a two-year $8 million deal with the Detroit Lions where he will join former Patriots’ assistant and current head coach in Motown, Matt Patricia. Beyond Patricia and Shelton, there will be an even stronger Patriots vibe in Detroit.
The Patriots also traded safety Duron Harmon to the Lions, and linebacker Jamie Collins Sr., another New England free agent signed in Detroit as well.
Beau Allen’s Contract Details
Allen’s deal with the Patriots is also for two years, per NFL insider Adam Caplan, but it isn’t quite as lucrative, though the base could equate the same if Allen reaches the incentives in his deal. In year 1 of Allen’s deal, he will collect a $1.7 million signing bonus, and a $1.3 million base with $800,000 fully guaranteed. There is a $900,000 per game roster bonus.
In 2021, Allen earns a $2.2 million base with $250,000 fully guaranteed. He’ll have the same roster bonus he had in the first year of the deal. The incentive is based on playing time, and it’s for an additional $1 million.
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Beau Allen Vs. Danny Shelton: Age, Size, Career Stats, and Experience
Allen, who is affectionately known as “The Polar Bear” is two years older at 28. Shelton is 26. From a size standpoint, Allen is just a touch leaner. He’s listed at 6’3″ 327 pounds while the stocky and sturdy Shelton checks in at 6’2″ 347 pounds.
The two men are comparable as it relates to experience and durability. In a five-year NFL career, Shelton has only missed five games. Three of those came in 2018, his first season with the Patriots. Allen, who has played for the Philadelphia Eagles and Bucs, has been in the NFL for six seasons.
He has only missed six games over that time. Considering both men play in the trenches, they have been very reliable. Shelton’s run is perhaps even more impressive when you consider he’s been a starter almost all of his career. In 75 career games, he has started 59 of them. In comparison, Allen, who has played in 90 NFL contests since being drafted in the seventh round of the 2014 Draft by the Eagles, has only started 16 games.
Let’s look at production, which will obviously favor Shelton because he has more reps as a starter. Shelton has 4.5 career sacks, 210 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and 14 quarterback hits. He’s also forced a fumble. According to Pro Football Reference’s Approximate Value statistic, the 2019 season was his best. He totaled an AV of 12.
Allen has 2.5 career sacks, 117 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and 15 quarterback hits.
Beau Allen vs. Danny Shelton Beyond the Numbers
The numbers can be deceiving considering the massive difference in playing time. It’s an important thing to understand is that Allen is a bit quicker on his feet. While things can change, Allen’s 40-time (5.3) was noticeably quicker than Shelton’s (5.64).
The additional athleticism helps Allen offer a little more versatility to Bill Belichick and Co. on defense.
However, Shelton looks to be the more stout and freakishly strong player, and this is invaluable against the run. Because of the requirements of their role as run-stuffing nose tackles, it would appear Allen is a slight downgrade. That might explain the cheaper contract terms.