The New England Patriots and their fans had originally hoped that tight end Dwayne Allen would be the type of playmaker who could ease the pressure off Rob Gronkowski and the rest of the offense. That’s why the team traded for him this past offseason.
But, through five games with the Patriots, Allen has exactly zero catches and has been a complete non-factor in the offense. Due to this, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels spoke recently about Allen and his role, specifically about his lack of production, via NESN’s Doug Kyed.
“I think, in many ways, that’s just how the game has gone, how the game plan has meshed with something that the defense may have done,” McDaniels said Monday on a conference call. “Dwayne’s learning and adapting to our system and what we do each week. He’s only played five games in our offense and continuing to work hard to try to get better. I would say he’s not the only one that’s in that situation.
“There’s a lot of guys that I would say you’d put in that same group, and they’re still learning and processing how we do things and what we do. Again, there’s a lot of circumstances and variables in each game, in each play that determine where the ball will go or won’t go. I would say that’s more of a function of what the defense chooses to do against our scheme. Hopefully, we’re trying to do the best thing with the ball each play. But, no, I wouldn’t say that’s the case. We’re working hard, and he’s working hard, and we’re trying to get better.”
Last season with the Indianapolis Colts, Allen caught 35-of-52 targets for 406 yards and six touchdowns. The potential is unquestionably there, but even in Week 5 with Rob Gronkowski inactive, Allen couldn’t produce at all.
Time will tell, but the Patriots will almost certainly look to find ways to get him involved in the coming weeks. But, fans will have to play the wait-and-see game when it comes to seeing what his max potential role with the team looks like.
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