Tight end can still be considered a need for the Buffalo Bills in 2019. Brandon Beane has slightly filled the need adding Tyler Kroft from the Cincinnati Bengals, Jake Fisher (former offensive lineman), Dawson Knox in the draft (not signed yet), and Tommy Sweeney through the draft also. These new players are additions to a tight end room that was only bringing back Jason Croom. Beane has filled the position with quality players that can all compete for a chance on the roster. To upgrade even further, Beane could make a deal for Kyle Rudolph especially with the recent injuries to Kroft, Croom, and the failure of Knox to sign yet.
The Minnesota Vikings recently drafted University of Alabama’s Irv Smith Jr at tight end in the second round. Therefore, they could be shopping Rudolph, their tight end of the last 8 seasons. Rudolph has been a solid NFL tight end over his career and would be a great addition to the Bills tight end room.
Why a Kyle Rudolph Trade Is a Smart Idea
If the Vikings are shopping Kyle Rudolph because they have Smith Jr, the price should be relatively cheap. One or two middle-to-late round picks should be sufficient for Rudolph. That is not a large price to pay for the benefits he can bring to the Buffalo Bills roster.
A significant fact about Rudolph is that this season he was nominated for the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award. He won the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year Award Charity Challenge this year. See the video below the Vikings shared to see how Rudolph has changed lives beyond football. His character would fit in perfectly with Sean McDermott’s philosophy. If you do anything today, watch this video. It goes beyond football what he has done for his community.
Kyle Rudolph would instantly be the starter on the roster. He would let Kroft develop under him as the 2nd tight end. Kroft has been a career backup anyways and would be solid in that role. Both of them together could mentor Croom, Dawson Knox, and Tommy Sweeney. Rudolph has been a mainstay the last eight years, being the Vikings primary tight end and starting all 16 games the last four years in a row.
Rudolph has playoff experience to go along with the skill set to block and catch. At 6-foot-6 260 lbs, he is a monster on the line as a blocker. He helped pave the way for Adrian Peterson for years all while being a force in the passing game as well. The two-time pro bowler scored 8 TD’s in 2017 and had a huge year in 2016 going for 83 catches, 840 yards, and 7 TDs. He even scored 9 TD’s in just his sophomore season. He has been extremely reliable over his career averaging 61 catches in his five full, 16 game seasons. Rudolph would easily be the most productive option the Bills have had at tight end in quite some time.
Kyle Rudolph can be that reliable veteran who can instantly contribute to the offense in multiple ways. He will pave the way in the run game while being a safety blanket for Josh Allen. He will bring playoff experience and eight years of NFL service as a starter to the roster. Rudolph is still just 29 and most definitely has a few good seasons left in him. He would be the perfect 2-3 year segway into the Croom, Knox, and Sweeney era (or someone else). Rudolph would upgrade the tight end room in Buffalo. Also, Rudolph’s reliability in both facets of the game would be a huge upgrade for the offense. At a cheap cost, the Bills should absolutely make a trade for him.