Jared Allen has been playing with torn labrum in shoulder
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GREEN BAY, Wis. - Minnesota Vikings defensive end Jared Allen confirmed Sunday that he has been playing this season despite a torn labrum in one of his shoulders.
Fox Sports' Jay Glazer, who is close with Allen through mixed martial arts training, first reported the information about the Vikings' top pass rusher on Sunday morning.
"Honestly, my hats off to our training staff," Allen said following the Vikings' 23-14 loss to the Packers. "I've been banged up a lot this year from (my) groins to my shoulder. They've done a great job of getting me there. I've never had to miss a practice for it. I've never had to miss a game for it. They do a good job of keeping it healthy and, heck, I think my AC joint is probably the worst part about it."
Allen has been on the injury report much of the season because of neck and groin injuries. But the shoulder didn't appear until the week before the Vikings' Nov. 9 game against Detroit.
Allen said he doesn't know when he tore the labrum but that it likely happened last season.
"It bothered me this offseason with some training," Allen said. "When I found out about it this offseason, it was a little late to have surgery. But working with (athletic trainer Eric Sugarman), I asked him what kind of exercise I can do and stuff to strengthen it.
"The only impact it really had was I couldn't do flat bench anymore. I started doing incline bench and that stabilized it. I thought training camp was going to be (tough). Coach (Leslie Frazier) just said, 'Let me know if it bothers you.' And really it hasn't been bothering me. (Sugarman) has done a great job of just keeping me healthy. The biggest thing was my groins this year and those are healthy. It's tough sleeping at night sometimes but you push through. Everybody is beat up."
Asked if he could face offseason surgery, Allen said:
"We'll see how it goes. I don't like the 'S' word but honestly, like I said, Jay is a good friend of mine and obviously he reported it and that's fine. But it hasn't limited me in anything for practice. I haven't even been in the training room with it. I go about my workouts and (head strength and conditioning coach Tom) Kanavy, we do a workout scheduled where it keeps it strong. So to the extent of it we'll find out after the year."
Because the Vikings did not list Allen with a shoulder issue on the injury report for so many weeks, they could be subject to discipline by the NFL. The league has punished multiple teams this season for failing to properly disclose injuries.
"I really don't want to discuss his injuries," Frazier said when asked about Allen. "Jared's played every game this season. Like most guys, especially this time of the year, you're playing through something. "
Allen had 22 sacks last season, just shy of the NFL record. He has 8.5 sacks in 12 games this season after being credited with 1.5 on Sunday against the Packers.