Keenan Allen said he told Chargers a pay cut was 'not happening' before trade to Bears

Six-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Keenan Allen is opening up about the shocking trade that sent him from the Los Angeles Chargers to the Chicago Bears earlier this week.

The Chargers traded Allen to the Chicago Bears in exchange for a fourth-round pick on Thursday, one day after Los Angeles released wide receiver Mike Williams. Allen confirmed that the Chargers had asked him to take a pay cut or restructure his contract, as linebackers Joey Bosa and Khalil Mack agreed to do. He said he declined.

"There really was no emotion, it was, I'm not doing it," Allen said of the team's request. "I'm not doing it. Came off my best season, so it's not happening."

Allen, who was drafted out of the University of California with the 76th overall pick by the Chargers in 2013, caught a career-high 108 receptions (a Chargers single-season record) for 1,243 yards and seven touchdowns through 13 games. He missed the final four games of the season with an ankle injury.

Chicago Bears WR Keenan Allen listens to reporters at a news conference on Saturday.
Chicago Bears WR Keenan Allen listens to reporters at a news conference on Saturday.

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Allen said he "obviously wanted to finish my career" in Los Angeles, "but things happen and you've got to keep on going."

Allen, 31, said he's "definitely excited about the new opportunity and can't wait to team up with Bears receiver DJ MooreThe Bears own the No. 1 overall pick and are widely expected to draft USC QB Caleb Williams.

"Anytime you've got two guys that can make plays and beat man coverage, it's going to be tough," Allen said. "That's anytime. Obviously, he's a guy who's made plays in this league for a long time, and myself as well. Both of us together, it's going to be pretty good."

Allen said he's going to "just continue what I've been doing" in Chicago. He added, "Nothing changes but the jersey for me. That last name's still gonna be on the back."

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"I'm just a friendly guy," he said. "I'm a friendly guy on and off the field. Obviously on the football field, I know the game. I know the ins and outs. I know the zones. I know how to beat man (coverage). I know pretty much how to play the game, so I just think I'm friendly for the quarterback because I'll be in the right spots. I know how to communicate with them."

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Keenan Allen on Chargers pay cut request: 'I'm not doing it'