6 Vikings players who could be traded next before the deadline

(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Harrison Smith
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Harrison Smith /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Chuck Cook -USA TODAY Sports) Kyle Rudolph /

Kyle Rudolph – TE

Another veteran who could find himself on the chopping block ahead of the trade deadline is Kyle Rudolph. The tight end has performed well this season despite not getting much in the way of targets, but the Vikings might decide to start the Irv Smith Jr. era ahead of schedule given their current predicament.

This transition is already happening, if truth be told. Rudolph has been used more as a blocking tight end through six weeks of the campaign – something he has done well. But Smith’s role in the passing game is increasing with every week that goes by and it is something that will eventually see the former Notre Dame standout on the outside looking in.

One problem Minnesota will have regarding a possible trade involving Rudolph is his contract. The tight end has three years and more than $25 million in base salary remaining on his deal after this season and it would take some persuading for any team to take on that sort of financial commitment at this stage of his career.

Yet another contract extension gone wrong, perhaps?

Either way, Rudolph owes the Vikings nothing. He has lived up to his second-round billing coming out of college in no uncertain terms and no Minnesota fan will ever forget last season’s overtime walk-off touchdown catch to secure a playoff win over the New Orleans Saints in a hurry.