Defoe was the hero for the Black Cats yet again on Saturday as he converted a last-minute penalty to win his side a potentially priceless point in the 1-1 draw at Stoke City.
It was the 33-year-old's 14th Premier League goal in 26 starts, and fourth from his last seven games, and Allardyce says it is up to his team-mates to relieve him of the goalscoring burden to some extent.
The North-East side are 18th in the table, one point behind 17th-placed Newcastle United with a game in hand, and the 61-year-old admits that his boys would most probably be relegated already if not for the ex-Tottenham marksman.
He was quoted as saying by Goal.com: "Where would we be without Jermain Defoe? Relegated probably. The other lads haven’t scored enough goals, Jermain has kept us close to be out of trouble.
"I am going home satisfied it is a point gained rather than two dropped."
Allardyce's side have safety in their own hands. They host Chelsea next week, but a visit of Everton and a trip to Watford represents their final two games of the season, and seven points from all three might well see them beat the drop.