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Devon Allen showcases world-class speed on game-winning TD

Quarterback Reid Sinnett threw a powerful 55-yard deep ball down the middle to rookie wide receiver Devon Allen, who blew past Cleveland cornerbacks Lavert Hill and Herb Miller with Olympic speed for a touchdown.

His celebration? An homage to his professional track and field career – he got into form and hurdled.

It was a performance to which Head Coach Nick Sirianni responded, "Hey, we've got to get you a new celebration because you're a football player now."

Sirianni's reaction is reflective of Devon Allen's recent transition from Olympic 110-meter hurdler to Eagles wide receiver – the catch was one of his first opportunities to showcase his world-class capabilities on the professional football stage.

"We had it drawn up and the safety tried to cut on the over route, so there was nobody back there – and he's faster. He's the fastest man on the planet," Sinnett said, recounting the play.

The game-winning score proved his quickness could reflect in game productivity at the league level; once finished with a Jake Elliott kick, the play put the Eagles ahead 21-20, where it remained through the end of the game.

The completion was Sinnett's first of the game, and the catch and score were Allen's first of the preseason – and his incumbent NFL career. The score also marked his first since September 10, 2016 when he caught a 77-yard touchdown pass in Oregon's 44-26 victory over Virginia.

His playing career has been dormant since then; he suffered an ACL injury in the Ducks' following game against Nebraska – the third game of his senior season.

In the meantime, since his recovery, he's boasted a successful track and field career, finishing fifth in the 2016 Olympics, fourth in the 2020 Olympics, and most recently competing in the 2022 World Championships.

"It's hard to do what Allen's done," said Sirianni. "He hasn't played football in a while, and he's getting into it. He's getting into the groove right here."

It's Eagles-Browns in a Sunday afternoon preseason clash. Check out some of the sideline photos from the team's photographers.

Allen's eagerness to find success at the highest level of football – and Sunday's catch is a glimpse of what he could be capable of with dedication to the craft. But after so many years without game experience, he acknowledges the hurdles ahead of him.

"There's a lot for me to learn, a lot for me to do in order to make a football team. I'm excited for the opportunity in general," Allen said.

"Also, just taking advantage of being out there and enjoying it because this is a game that I love and something I missed for six years. I'm glad to be back."

He attributes his development since the onset of camp to his experience observing and gleaning insight from the talented receivers surrounding him. The camaraderie he's built so far is noticeable; fellow wide receiver A.J. Brown chased the play 60 yards down the sideline to celebrate alongside Allen.

"As I started getting more comfortable with the offense with the help of Smitty (DeVonta Smith), A.J., and those guys, I'm watching (them) do what they're supposed to do correctly and trying to mimic that," said Allen.

"I'm starting to feel more comfortable every day, just trying to make the most of my opportunities in my reps and continue to get better."

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