Buccaneers land ex-Eagles DT Beau Allen in free agency
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By FRED GOODALL
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Free agent defensive tackle Beau Allen is eager to make a difference for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The former Philadelphia run-stopper signed a three-year, $15 million contract Thursday and has no qualms about leaving the reigning NFL champion Eagles to join a team that hasn't made the playoffs in a decade.
Allen said he's excited about the challenge of doing his part to help the Bucs get better.
"We won the Super Bowl in Philadelphia, but it wasn't all roses before that. We had tough seasons, too," the fifth-year pro said.
"I'm not afraid of work at all," Allen added. "That's why I'm here."
The 26-year-old tackle comes to the Bucs after spending the first four seasons of his career as part of a strong interior rotation with the Eagles, who led the league in rushing defense in 2017, limiting opponents to 79.2 yards per game on the ground.
The Bucs, by comparison, ranked 23rd against the run, allowing 117.5 yards per game.
"Stopping the run is a huge part of the game, and that's one thing we did really well in Philadelphia last year," Allen said.
"We were the No. 1 run defense and I think, to toot my own horn a little bit, I was a big part of that," he added. "We had a lot of good defensive lineman, a lot of good defensive players ... so that went into it as well."
With Tampa Bay, the 6-foot-3, 327-pound Allen fills a need for interior help created by the release of underperforming tackle Chris Baker and loss of veteran Clinton McDonald, who became an unrestricted free agent.
Allen, who is excited about playing alongside six-time Pro Bowl tackle Gerald McCoy, entered the NFL as a seventh-round draft pick of the Eagles in 2014. He appeared in 63 games, with eight starts, and had two sacks and 10 tackles for losses over the past four seasons.
"I pride myself on playing a pretty specific brand of football that did well for me in Philadelphia," he said. "I consider myself a tough, dependable, consistent guy. I think that's one thing (Tampa Bay) liked about me, and that's one thing that's not going to change."
The Bucs went 5-11 last season, missing the playoffs for the 10th consecutive season.
The Eagles won their first Super Bowl title, however Allen hasn't forgotten what it took to get there.
"Don't get me wrong, winning isn't easy in the NFL at all. It takes a lot of blood, sweat and tears, a lot of effort and a lot of dirty work that a lot of people don't really realize," Allen said.
"I'm excited to be in a place that when you go through those tough times and you work and then you get the rewards in the success of winning, it makes it that much better," he added. "I'm not afraid of that. ... I'm really excited about the opportunity and the challenge."
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Updated March 15, 2018