Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen has no plans to discard his gunslinger mentality.
"I'm not going to be Captain Checkdown," Allen said Thursday, via ESPN's Marcel Louis-Jacques. "I'm going to continue to play the game the way I love it."
No one would mistake Allen with a checkdown king. Pro Football Focus published a study that showed over the past two years, Allen threw just 20 checkdowns on 880 attempts. His 2.3 percent was the lowest among all qualifying quarterbacks. On third downs, Allen particularly refuses to give up on plays. He's thrown just one checkdown on 245 third-down attempts (0.4 percent).
The goal for Allen is balancing his aggressive nature with smart play. It's not always bad to take the checkdown as opposed to forcing a pass downfield, to, say, a double-covered fullback.
Allen admitted he must improve his completion percentage. To get better, the third-year pro has been watching tape of Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Russell Wilson and Aaron Rodgers this offseason.
"Late in games, they're not trying to force things," Allen said, via NFL Network's Kimberly Jones, noting he's been too "eager" to make a play when he should let things come to him.
The addition of Stefon Diggs rounds out Allen's receiver corps with a trio -- coupled with John Brown and Cole Beasley -- that can all get separation off the line of scrimmage. The wideouts should make life easier on Allen. He doesn't have to become Charlie Checkdown but must make the right reads to get his weapons in space and let them do work for him this season.