Keenan Allen Ranks 8th Among WRs in Poll of NFL Personnel Evaluators
Jason B. Hirschhorn
For the majority of his seven years in the NFL, Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen has largely gone unappreciated by the football-watching population. The veteran wideout simply hasn't garnered the same attention as peers like the Arizona Cardinals' DeAndre Hopkins or Kansas City Chiefs' Tyreek Hill despite delivering comparable production on a per-game basis.
But while the general public might overlook Allen's contributions, those in the league hold him in high regard. According to a poll of 50 NFL personnel evaluators conducted by ESPN, Allen ranks as the eighth best wide receiver in the NFL entering the 2020 season.
The vote puts Allen in strong company. He ranks just behind the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Mike Evans and the Green Bay Packers' Davante Adams -- two of the receiving gems of the 2014 NFL draft class -- while right ahead of up-and-comers like the Buccaneers' Chris Godwin and the Dallas Cowboys' Amari Cooper.
While Allen's position on the list might surprise some, his production leaves little doubt as to his value. The wideout has amassed 6,405 receiving yards and 34 touchdowns since entering the league as a third-round pick in 2013. Allen has also crossed the 1,000-yard mark in each of the last three years, earning three consecutive Pro Bowl nods for his efforts.
Questions remain as to how Allen's production will fare following the departure of Philip Rivers, the wide receiver's only starting quarterback since joining the Chargers. With Tyrod Taylor or Justin Herbert at the controls, the offense figures to lean more heavily on the run game, a marked departure from the high-volume passing attack of the past decade.
Still, with Allen's ability to get open early and often, whichever quarterback the Chargers use should develop a connection at some point in 2020.
-- Jason B. Hirschhorn is an award-winning sports journalist and Pro Football Writers of America member. Follow him on Twitter: @by_JBH