Kyle Rudolph passed on returning to Notre Dame for his senior season to enter the NFL Draft after being tabbed as the top tight end in the draft. On Friday night, the 6-foot-6, 259-pound tight end from Cincinnati, Ohio found his new home as the Minnesota Vikings selected the talented tight end with the 11th pick (43rd overall) in the second round of the draft.
Rudolph was on pace to have his best year in an Irish uniform in 2010 before injuries sidelined him after playing in six games on the season. For his career, Kyle pulled down 90 receptions and 8 touchdowns in 29 total games.
The questions surrounding Rudolph will be his durability as he is coming off a sever hamstring injury. However, Kyle has continued to develop his game each year by getting bigger and stronger. What has always made Rudolph special is his overall physical ability as he has great hip fluidity and has shown the ability to separate in and out of his breaks.
Because of his basketball background, Rudolph has always been strong in going up and catching the ball at its highest point and coming down with the catch in traffic.
The one area Rudolph will need to continue to work on is his blocking. While some may feel he lacks the strength to be an effective run blocker, I disagree and feel this will be an area Kyle will surprise some once he gets into camp.
For Minnesota, this is a solid pick with high value as Rudolph should be able to come in and play early during his career.