Saints To Retain DC Dennis Allen

Saints defensive coordinator Dennis Allen is expected to sign a new deal that will keep him in New Orleans, according to Ian Rapoport of (Twitter link).

Earlier today, reports surfaced indicating Allen was presumptive Bengals head coach Zac Taylor‘s top choice to take over as DC in Cincinnati. Allen’s contract with the Saints had expired, so the Bengals wouldn’t have had to negotiate any sort of compensation in order to land Allen. However, it appears New Orleans was able to convince Allen to stay in the role he’s held since 2015.

The Bengal weren’t the only rival club to express interest in Allen this offseason, as the Dolphins also interviewed him for their head coaching position. Allen, spent three seasons as the Raiders’ head coach, compiling an abysmal record of 8-28. But he’s respected in coaching circles, and his work with the Saints has not gone unnoticed.

Under former defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, New Orleans regularly posted one of the NFL’s worst results, and the unit continued to struggle during Allen’s first full season as DC (2016), finishing 31st in DVOA, Football Outsiders’ efficiency metric. However, the Saints vaulted up to eighth in defensive DVOA in 2017 and ranked 11th this past season. New Orleans ranked 14th and 19th in points allowed and yardage allowed, respectively, in 2018.

While players such as defensive end Alex Okafor, linebacker Craig Robertson, and cornerback P.J. Williams are set to reach unrestricted free agency in March, the Saints don’t project to lose any key defensive pieces this offseason. As such, Allen could find himself in head coaching rumors again next year, provided New Orleans’ defense continues to excel.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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