November 26, 2011; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans tight end Rhett Ellison (40) against the UCLA Bruins during the second half at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE

Vikings Sign 4th-Round Pick Rhett Ellison

Not long ago Rhett Ellison was content to float down rivers dreaming of anything but being a professional football player. But that all changed when the Vikings unexpectedly selected him in the fourth round of the draft. Now the former USC tight end is in the NFL. Wednesday the Vikings announced the signing of Ellison, whose deal according to Jeremy Fowler is for four years at $2.4 million with a $300,000 signing bonus.

Not bad for a guy who never thought he’d be drafted. Here’s some insight on Ellison via Sideline Scouting:

Good frame, has the body to add another 10-15 pounds without losing any of his elite athleticism… Shows good tight quarter quickness, can shake defenders with a few steps… Is tough to stop when he gets a full head of steam, uses the speed to attack the field vertically and is extremely hard to stop in those situations… Gets off the line of scrimmage with authority when going out for a pass… Is nearly impossible to jam off the line due to a great up-and-over arm move… Takes sharp breaks when breaking off a route, tough to track step for step as a defender… Shows no fear when going across the middle, willing to take big hits if it means catching the football and moving the chains… Gets straight into defenders when run blocking without taking extra steps or wasting motion… Very smart player, understands how to block and uses angles to hold his blocks and not let defenders make plays… Shows good effort at all times and puts in the work to get better each day… Shows the ability to play on special teams and could make an immediate impact there.

It’s pretty easy to see why the Vikings took Ellison: they expect him to be the next Jim Kleinsasser. He’ll have to strengthen up and improve his blocking if he wants to fill those big shoes though.

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Tags: Jim Kleinsasser Minnesota Vikings Rhett Ellison

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