The Chargers receiver set a franchise record with 102 receptions for 1,393 yards, which was third in the NFL, and scored six touchdowns. Allen was named the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year during Saturday’s NFL Honors program in Minneapolis.
Allen suffered a season-ending kidney injury while making a touchdown catch against the Ravens in the eighth game of the 2015 season. He had healed well and received a four-year contract extension before the 2016 season only to see his 2016 campaign end just as it started.
Allen tore his right ACL in the season opener at Kansas City and was lost for the year.
Finally healthy again in 2017, Allen had a career year and posted more than 1,000 receiving yards for the first time since his rookie season. The 25-year-old North Carolina native was a third-round pick out of California in the 2013 NFL Draft and caught 71 passes for 1,046 yards and eight touchdowns in his first season.
After falling to the Giants twice in between, the Patriots rebounded to stop the Seahawks’ quest to repeat in Super Bowl 49, but they saw the Broncos’ dominant defense take Super Bowl 50 before that epic rally to best the Falcons last year.
The NFL was in a quarterback drought this season, as a number of teams struggled to find consistent signal-callers. Foles has one season left on his current contract, with free agency coming after the 2018 season, but teams will almost certainly be knocking on Philadelphia’s door to inquire about Foles this offseason.
And why not? He spent most of the season with a clipboard, watching as second-year pro Carson Wentz dazzled Eagles fans with mouth-watering glimpses into the future. But Foles answered the call when Wentz went down with a torn ACL late in the season, maintaining in the NFC championship and Super Bowl the same high-level offense the Eagles enjoyed with Wentz.
“I’m going to stay aggressive with Nick and let his playmakers make plays,” Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said on NBC before the Super Bowl.
That’s about as big a compliment a head coachmake about his backup quarterback entering a Super Bowl, and he meant it. The playbook was open all game Sunday, allowing Foles to throw downfield, audible and even catch a touchdown pass.
After his success late this season, and becoming a Super Bowl winner, it’s hard to imagine Foles accepting a backup role with so many starting opportunities awaiting this offseason.