26-Year-Old Tight End – Minnesota Vikings
2016 Fantasy Football Outlook
Rudolph's greatest feat last season might have been just staying healthy. After playing 17 games combined the previous two years because of knee, ankle, groin, abdomen and foot injuries, Rudolph playe...
Kyle Rudolph Contract Information:
Rudolph agreed to a five-year, $36.5 million contract extension that can be worth up to $40 million in July 2014. The extension begins in 2015.
Rudolph (groin) led the Vikings with seven catches for 70 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 22-10 upset win at Carolina.
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|Receiving||Rec Distance||Big Rec Games||Rushing||Kick Ret||Punt Ret||Fumbles|
|2016 Proj||26||MIN||Subscribe now to see our 2013 projections for Kyle Rudolph|
Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
|Fantasy Points Per Game||Receiving Stats||Red Zone Targets||Rushing Stats||Red Zone Runs|
|2016 Proj||26||MIN||Subscribe now to see our 2016 projections for Kyle Rudolph|
Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
|Snap Count||Receiving||Rec Distance||Rushing||Fumbles||Kick Ret||Punt Ret||Red Zone Targets||Red Zone Runs|
A blank stat line is used above whenever a player was not on the field for any plays in the game that week.
Kyle Rudolph: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
For the second consecutive year, injuries ruined Rudolph's season. He missed eight games in 2013 with a broken foot and then missed seven games last year with a sports hernia and injured knee. It was particularly disappointing last season because he had little competition for tight-end targets in a Norv Turner offense that likes to use the position as a wide receiver. In his nine games, Rudolph lined up in the slot on 68 percent of plays. The team's tight ends were targeted 97 times, resulting in 67 receptions for 713 yards. This season, Rudolph should again have the opportunity to make an impact. The Vikings acquired speedster Mike Wallace to provide the deep threat the team missed last year. With Wallace stretching the field, Rudolph should have more space to work. The return of Adrian Peterson also will benefit Rudolph, as defenses likely will place an extra defender in the box. A year's worth of experience for quarterback Teddy Bridgewater bodes well, too. Even if Rudolph is not used as much in the vertical passing game as expected, he should still be a force in the red zone. At 6-6, 259, Rudolph, who scored eight touchdowns in 2012, has 13 career touchdowns on 27 red-zone targets (21 receptions).
A Pro Bowler in 2012, Rudolph was limited to eight games last year after suffering a season-ending broken foot in Week 9. He was a touchdown specialist in 2012 (nine TD on 53 receptions) but this year could be used more in the vertical passing game with the arrival of offensive coordinator Norv Turner. At San Diego with Antonio Gates and last year in Cleveland with Jordan Cameron, Turner not only targeted the position often but routinely used the tight end in the slot. Like Gates and Cameron, Rudolph is a former basketball player -- he turned down a Division I basketball scholarship to play tight end at Notre Dame -- who has good speed, soft hands and can catch the ball in traffic. And at 6-6, 259, he should continue to be a force at the goal line. John Carlson left for Arizona, leaving Rudolph with little competition for targets at the position. The biggest question is at quarterback where Matt Cassel figures to start until rookie Teddy Bridgewater is ready. Rudolph played two games with Cassel last season, catching his two targets for six yards in the first and then making nine catches on 11 targets for 97 yards and a score in the second.
Rudolph was a touchdown specialist last year, tallying nine scores despite recording only 53 catches, thanks to increased work in the red zone - his 17 targets there were second among tight ends. Rudolph is an ideal red-zone weapon as his 6-6, 260-pound frame allows him to get the ball in places opposing defenders can't reach. Rudolph is also considered a good blocker for the running attack, displaying the ability to open up holes or seal the edge when necessary. Other than the scores, however, the Rudolph-Christian Ponder connection was lackluster – Rudolph's yards per target fell to a paltry 5.3. And while Rudolph was targeted a healthy 93 times, he caught fewer than 57 percent of the passes that came his way, accounting for only 493 yards, 25th among tight ends.
Rudolph had a decent rookie season as he saw his role in the offense grow in the second half. The 6-6, 260-pound tight end caught all three of his touchdowns in the final six games, showing improved chemistry with Christian Ponder. While Rudolph only had 39 targets, he showed enough receiving skills to have a much larger role this season with Visanthe Schianco gone via free agency. Unfortunately, the Vikings signed John Carlson to replace him. Carlson, though, is coming off a season-long shoulder injury, and the Vikings run a lot of two tight-end sets anyway. Look for Rudolph to win the starting job and be the bigger factor in the Vikings’ passing game.
Rudolph was the first tight end drafted in 2011, but he begins the season as the second tight end on the depth chart with the opportunity to learn the nuances of the game from veteran Visanthe Shiancoe. Big and physical at 6-6, 260, the Notre Dame standout still needs to improve his blocking skills, which might be his weakest attribute. He has good speed for his size and will continue to develop strength as a 21-year-old. Coaches have raved about his “coachability” and with his physical tools, Rudolph has the most long-term upside of any rookie tight end. A hamstring injury that had nagged him during the early part of the Notre Dame season shut him down completely for the last six games, but isn't expected to be a problem when training camp starts.