It was the common discussion that popped up across the Interwebs after the Vikings drafted Alabama tight end Irv Smith Jr. in the second round of last night's NFL Draft. What happens to Kyle Rudolph now?
With the need to cut salary in order to pay the rookies this year, followed by the drafting of a young, pass catching tight end you can't blame anybody for thinking this way. But according to General Manager Rick Spielman, the Vikings believe that Smith and Rudolph can coexist within the Vikings offense.
Asked how the drafting of Smith would impact Rudolph's future with the team, Spielman responded saying, "Kyle Rudolph is here. Two different styles, what Kyle does and what Irv can do. Just totally two different types of tight ends."
We'll have to wait and see how this shakes out as OTAs and Mini Camp near. As mentioned above, the Vikings will HAVE TO shed some salary somewhere. They will need an estimated $7 million to pay this year's rookie class and right now only have $1.89 million available. Something has to give.
The reality of the situation might simply mean it's only a matter of time.
If the Vikings were to trade Rudy, it would likely be for future draft picks since we're already into the third day of the 2019 Draft. Spielman isn't going to come out last night and tell the world their plan is to trade Kyle, he'd lose any and all leverage he had for value. Rookies don't need to be signed yet meaning the Vikings have a little time to try and work something out in an effort to cut that $5 million.
But that clock is ticking...