Allen had seven sacks, 22 quarterback hits, four forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries -- including one for the deciding touchdown in a victory over the Tennessee Titans to win the AFC South -- but he wasn't the consistent playmaker he wants to be.
"My individual growth last year wasn't good enough," Allen said Monday, the first day of the team's three-day minicamp. "Just the tape that I watched. You've got to be real critical of yourself. ... I watched all the games and I was real critical and I knew I needed to not put that out there no more; I wanted to prioritize that, and that was my main focus all season, is really to work on that and to grow as a player overall."
Allen's seven sacks led the Jaguars last season, but he went eight consecutive games without posting a sack before getting four in the final five games. He had a sack, 11 tackles and four tackles for loss in the Jaguars' two playoff games.
"... Always room for improvement, and I'm ready to take those next steps individually," Allen said.
Allen, the No. 7 overall pick in 2019, hasn't posted double-digit sacks since his rookie season when he had 10.5 playing alongside Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue. He has 27.5 sacks, seven forced fumbles, and 70 quarterback hits in four seasons. He's playing the 2023 season on the fifth-year option for a guaranteed $10.892 million.
Allen was the only Jaguars player under contract to skip all of the team's voluntary offseason program, but outside linebackers coach Bill Shuey and head coach Doug Pederson said they had been in regular contact with Allen throughout the past few months. Allen said he worked out in Arizona and had always planned to attend this week's minicamp.
As he did last season, Pederson excused the majority of the veterans from participating this week. Rookies, first-year players, and veterans coming off injuries are participating.
"This is an opportunity to see him and really just embrace him and welcome him back," Pederson said. "There's no bad blood or nothing like that. I mean, guys are entitled to the voluntary program. They can do what they want to do and it's just good to get him back in this building and embrace him and get him back with his teammates this week."