Rudolph (groin) led the Vikings with seven catches for 70 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 22-10 upset win at Carolina. Rudolph has been a major part of Minnesota's offense through three weeks, with 14 catches on 26 targets. He has found the end zone in both of quarterback Sam Bradford's starts, and should continue to see plenty of red zone looks as the Vikings will likely opt to pass more in that area during running back Adrian Peterson's (knee) absence. The tight end was able to muster this solid line despite Bradford throwing for just 171 yards, showing that he can excel in any environment.
Rudolph (groin) was a full practice participant Thursday. Making an appearance on Wednesday's injury report with a limited designation, Rudolph shrugged off the shackles and managed every drill Thursday. With eight targets in both of the Vikings' first two games of the season, the volume exists for the tight end to sustain value in the long term, especially with Adrian Peterson (knee) out of the picture.
Rudolph had three receptions for 31 yards, including a eight-yard touchdown, on eight targets in Sunday's win over Green Bay. Rudolph was second on the team on targets as it looks like he'll quickly emerge as one of new starter Sam Bradford's favorite options in the passing game. While the Vikings passing game may not give him a large number of targets, he's a leading option in the red zone.
Rudolph turned eight targets into four catches for 65 yards in Sunday's season-opening win over the Titans. With veteran backup Shaun Hill getting the start at quarterback in the wake of Teddy Bridgewater's season-ending ACL tear, it wasn't surprising to see the Vikings call a plethora of safe throws underneath. Minnesota's passing game isn't likely to change much even once the weak-armed Sam Bradford is ready to take over for Hill, so the tight end position should continue to be featured prominently. Rudolph is well on pace to exceed last season's 49 receptions and 495 receiving yards.
Rudolph caught three passes for 56 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's preseason game against the Chargers. Rudolph lost a fumble at the end of an 18-yard gain in the second quarter, but he made up for it on the very next drive, catching a 27-yard touchdown pass with just 78 seconds remaining in the half. Teddy Bridgewater honed in on Rudolph and Stefon Diggs, who caught five passes 71 yards on five targets.
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|4||10/04||New York Giants||14||5.00|
|16||12/24||@Green Bay Packers||27||11.00|
|3 Year Avg||50||34||346||3||17||10.18||52|