05/20/2019 | News release | Distributed by Public on 05/20/2019 17:42
The Vikings tight end told NFL Network's Tom Pelissero that he plans to attend the first day of Minnesota's organized team activities (OTAs) on Tuesday.
Pelissero added that Rudolph is currently in New York with his wife to receiver a leadership in the community award from Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly's foundation. The tight end will take an early flight back to Minneapolis on Tuesday morning to attend practice.
The veteran tight end doesn't need to attend Vikings practice on Tuesday -- OTAs are voluntary, after all -- but has chosen to do so.
Rudolph's decision to attend OTAs is notable because the tight end is in the middle of a contract dispute with Minnesota. The cap-strapped Vikings broke off extension talks with Rudolph two weeks ago and were reportedly considering trading him. The 29-year-old tight end is entering the final season of a five-year extension signed in 2014 and is due $7.6 million in 2019.
In response to this report, Rudolph told reporters that, while he's not hoping to be traded away from the organization that drafted him, he's also 'too young' to take a pay cut.
'I don't think they want to [trade me],' Rudolph told Sid Hartman of the Minneapolis Star Tribune last week. 'I don't think anyone wants to. We want it to end right with me being here.'
Rudolph is potentially expendable because the Vikings drafted Alabama tight end Irv Smith in the second round. Smith, though, sees the two working well together, telling NFL Network's Lindsay Rhodes last week, 'I hope that he's there, because I can learn from him and, you know, we can be a great combination.'
The pair will get their first opportunity to work together on Tuesday. If Rudolph has it his way, and at his price, it will be the first time of many.