KC Draft Rnd 2: Illinois G Jeff Allen

Jeff Allen

Heading into this draft the Kansas City Chiefs had two glaring weaknesses, nose tackle and the interior offensive line. On Thursday, they addressed their defense. In round two on Friday night, they added to their offense by selecting Illinois Guard, Jeff Allen.

In joining the Chiefs, Jeff Allen comes to Kansas City as a 4-year starter for the Illinois Fighting Illini. In his career, he played both right guard and right tackle.

Though the bulk of Allen's playing time came at the tackle position, the Chiefs will immediately have Allen push incumbent starter Ryan Lilja for the playing time.

As is the case with many of General Manager Scott Pioli's draft picks, Allen too possesses the versatility that the Chiefs GM covets. With Allen's ability to play as a swing tackle as well gives him added worth and adds some depth behind Branden Albert and newly signed tackle Eric Winston.

"They see me as a guy that can come in as a versatile guy that can play anything on the line, a guy they can plug in," Allen told the media after being selected in the second round.

Though Allen's experience at the guard position was limited in college, the Chiefs scouts got a chance to see him play his new position at the Senior Bowl and obviously they liked what they saw.

"I think I'm comfortable enough to play it at a high level", said Allen about the switch to guard. "The difference with guard is that you have to be less patient. I learned that at the Senior Bowl, and I just want to continue to get better at that position as well."

Allen was the epitome of a lunch pail offensive linemen and highlighted his durability and dependability with his 47-game consecutive starts streak.

Though Allen has yet to meet his teammates, he does already have a relationship with current Chiefs guard Jon Asomoah, who were teammates at Illinois.

"I knew Jon really well", said Allen. "When I came to Illinois, I started as a freshman. I played right next to him at right tackle when he was right guard. He's one of the guys that carried me along and kind of showed me the ropes."

Allen will finish his classes and graduate in May from the University of Illinois which shows his dedication that the Chiefs like about the linemen.

Though it may take the greater part of training camp and preseason for Allen to start competing for a starting job, he could be a mainstay on the Chiefs offensive line for years.

WARPAINT ILLUSTRATED MESSAGE BOARDS:
With the addition of Jeff Allen, the Chiefs might release veteran Ryan Lilja.


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