Hoping for 'shutout' against Jared Allen, Donald Penn says Allen got 'lucky'
MINNEAPOLIS -- Donald Penn loves the spotlight. He wants to be recognized among the best, and it’s hard to do that when no one’s watching.
Thursday night, everyone was.
And Penn wanted to live up to the moment against one of the game’s best pass rushers, the Vikings’ Jared Allen.
“I try to measure myself in these games,” Penn said. “A lot of people forget about me being in little ol’ Tampa. They don’t think of me as one of the premier tackles, but when I have a game like this, on national TV, that’s when you have to come out and show it.”
The matchup between Penn and the All-Pro Allen lived up to expectations, and Penn probably got the better of Allen. Things came to a head in the third quarter when the two had a dust-up after a play that ended with fists being thrown.
With the crowd erupting after the play – on which both players were flagged for personal fouls – Allen sacked quarterback Josh Freeman on the very next play. But Penn said there were mitigating circumstances.
“He got a lucky one on me,” Penn said. “That’s all right. Stuff like that happens. I got bumped by the 3-technique (defensive tackle). And I told him that was a lucky one, too. But that happens. I’d rather take a victory than a shutout anyway.”
Of the fracas between him and Allen, Penn said, “That’s what I do. I play to the whistle. It got a little chippy. That’s football. We shook hands after the game like we’re supposed to and we have mutual respect for each other. That’s the game.
“I have tremendous respect for the guy. He’s a great player. A great one. But he still got a lucky sack on me. It should’ve been a shutout.”