There was talk of Rudolph either taking a pay cut or getting cut earlier in the offseason that was denied by his agent, but the Vikings have little cap space and that’s made the futures of several veteran members of the team the subject of speculation this offseason.
Rudolph said on Friday night that it’s “awesome” that the team added Smith because offensive assistant Gary Kubiak’s past offenses have featured “a lot of guys who can play at a high level while using multiple tight-end sets.” Rudolph also said that he’s aware of the speculation about the possibility of the Vikings moving on for cap reasons.
“This is part of the NFL, younger guys coming in,” Rudolph said, via the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “But I truly believe my best football is still ahead of me. Whether it’s here or not, that’s not my decision. But I do know the football I have left in me, and that’s all I can control.”
Rudolph is in the final year of his contract, so the Smith pick may put an expiration date on his time in Minnesota even if it isn’t in 2019.