These days anytime Dennis Allen enters a room there’s an elephant following him around. That elephant’s name is Bountygate. Fair or unfair, Allen’s time as a defensive coach with the New Orleans Saints links him to the most scandalous event to hit football since Bill Belichick snuck a camcorder into opposing teams practices.
Though Allen had no direct connection to the pay for pain scandal his proximity to the issue makes for a continuous line of questioning that isn’t going away anytime soon thanks to the now infamous Gregg Williams audio recording.
Initially Allen kept a low profile once the news began to break on bountygate. Of course being that he was a newly minted head coach he did have other fish to fry. Problem was he knew at some point the time would come that he’d have to address that elephant.
Perhaps making the early effort to distance himself from the scandal, Allen’s first comments on bountygate were of praise for Roger Goodell and his hardline stance. Allen also expressed his sadness at seeing men he’s worked with being pushed out of the game via suspension.
Yesterday Allen again took another step towards getting away from that elephant. He took a little time to talk about his first official week as an NFL coach and as you’d expect that elephant again came up in conversation. When asked if he felt bountygate in any way tainted the championship the Saints won Allen gave the following answer.
What I’m going to say about it is, No. 1, I’m proud of the success that we were able to have there, and No.2 , I’ve moved on, and I’m really a lot more interested in what’s happening with the Oakland Raiders and trying to prepare ourselves for the upcoming season. What’s happened in the past, I’ve really moved on.
Clearly Allen is none too enthused about having to discuss the topic. While he can’t do anything about the past there is plenty Allen can do going forward.
To begin Allen is already laying the groundwork to ensure nothing like this will ever happen during his watch in Oakland. He’s addressed those that were in attendance for this week’s voluntary workouts and he’ll do it again once the entire team is gathered later. Also, Allen has a reputation for being a strict disciplinarian. Now that he’s a head shot caller in the league Allen will be able to lay down his version of the law. If form follows function then not only will the Raiders remain scandal free but the miracle of all miracles could occur – the Raiders might become one of the least penalized teams in the league.