Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Kyle Rudolph is retiring from the NFL after 12 seasons played. Rudolph also spent nine games with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last season, but will make his retirement official as a member of the Minnesota Vikings, the team in which he spent the majority of his career with. Outside of his ten years with the Vikings, the two-time Pro Bowl tight end spent one season with the New York Giants, and his last season with the Buccaneers.
Rudolph tallied 4,773 receiving yards and punched home 50 touchdowns on 482 catches throughout his career. As a rookie, he caught 26 passes for 249 yards and three touchdowns; in 2012, Rudolph made his first Pro Bowl after a year where he caught a career-high nine touchdown passes, which was tied for the most in the NFC among tight ends. He missed a total of 15 games in 2013 and 2014, but came back in 2016 to have the best season of his career, catching 83 passes for 840 yards and seven touchdowns. He had a second Pro Bowl season in 2017, finishing the season with eight touchdown catches, which was the eighth most in the NFL. In Week 18 of the 2022 season with Tampa Bay, Rudolph caught what would end up being the final touchdown catch of his career, and the final touchdown pass of Tom Brady’s career.
Rudolph told NBC Sports that he would be retiring, and shared his future plans: “I played for so long and earned a veteran status. Now I’m a rookie getting as many reps as I can in the media world. This off-season is about, ‘Where do I fit in?’ The NBC job doing games on Peacock is cool. And talking about the storylines of the day in the NFL on Sunday nights will be cool, too.” Rudolph will be calling Big 10 games for NBC Sports this fall, and will also be hosting a weekly radio show for Fox Sports.
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