Injuries keeping Keenan Allen from being great

By Vincent Frank
Courtesy of Denny Medley, USA Today Sports

When on the field last season, San Diego Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen proved himself to be among the most-talented players at his position in the NFL.

Unfortunately, the former third-round pick went down with a lacerated kidney eight games into the season. Halfway through the year, the CAL product had tallied 67 receptions for 725 yards. More than that, he posted an absurd 84.8 percent catch rate.

Now in his first game back since suffering that serious injury, Allen finds himself awaiting confirmation on what could be another devastating setback to a once promising career.

Allen suffered what appears to be a torn ACL on a non-contact play against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday (watch here).

It was one of those freak injuries that happens when it seems like the football gods are conspiring against you. It also just so happened to take place after Allen put up six receptions for 63 yards on just seven targets.

For a player that didn’t have any major injuries at the college level or in the pros prior to last year, this has to be some disheartening news.

Though, it must be noted that Allen did drop to the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft due to concerns over both his knee and ankle.

Leading up to the draft, Allen was being compared to the likes of Anquan Boldin and Larry Fitzgerald. Not a bad group to be in at all.

And in reality, his production has mirrored that.

Even before his amazing half season in 2015, Allen had jumped on to the scene big time. Here’s a guy that caught 148 passes for over 1,800 yards in his first two seasons. Tremendous numbers for a young pass catcher making the transition from a college-ball offense at Berkeley.

Is it possible Allen returns to full health and picks up where he left off last season? Sure. But in just his last two quarters of play, the talented receiver has suffered two potentially career-threatening injury.

They are injuries that represent what we don’t like about this grand game of football. Taking a player away from his prime at a time when he was ready to join the game’s elite.