Notre Dame TE Kyle Rudolph was at the NFL Network studios on Tuesday to film a segment for “Path to the Draft.” Our Mike Mayock has ranked Rudolph as the top tight end prospect in this year’s draft, and we took some time to get to know him better.
You wore the same No. 9 as Tom Zbikowski at Notre Dame, do you think you could take him in a fight?
KR: No, I don’t. I watched his [second to] last fight, when he scored a first-round knockout. No, I would want Zib on my side.
What are some of your favorite movies?
KR: I really liked “Taken,” “Shooter” with Mark Wahlberg. From a comedy side, I like “Wedding Crashers,” “Step Brothers,” and I just saw “Just Go With It.” That was hilarious. Of course, being from Notre Dame, I have to mention “Rudy.” I watched that as a kid.
Did you ever meet Rudy Ruettiger?
KR: He’s been around but I never met him.
If you could meet him, what would you ask?
KR: How his experience portrayed in the movie was really the case in real life.
Like the scene where the team laid their jerseys on the coach’s desk. Do you think that really happened?
KR: Exactly, I would ask him stuff like that.
Do you think that really happened?
KR: Probably not. I don’t know how they would have gotten those jerseys the night before a game. The first time we ever saw our jerseys were when they were already on our shoulder pads before the game. I am sure the players stuck up for him. But that’s Hollywood, though.
Do you think Vince Vaughn‘s character threw a half-back option to get Rudy on the field?
KR: I haven’t gone back to see what exactly happened in the game, but I doubt that they threw a half-back option with that much time left in the game. It’s a good story, though. Hollywood is good like that.
Going back to “Just Go With It,” Illinois DT Corey Liuget really liked that movie, too. So you get the same question: Jennifer Aniston or Brooklyn Decker?
KR: That’s tough. Is there a “c” for both? (Laughs) Just kidding. I think I would have done the same thing as [Adam Sandler] in the movie and chosen Jennifer Aniston. He was a plastic surgeon who got caught up chasing around younger women. But he found a good one, closer to his age, with children. He made the right choice.
You are from Cincinnati, what are your favorite teams?
KR: Bengals, Reds, I have no real NBA team, and I have become a big Mighty Ducks fan. I met [Ducks winger] Bobby Ryan recently, and he wears No. 9, too. My Ducks are in a big playoff race.
If you could hire one band play your wedding, who would it be?
KR: Kenny Chesney. I lived with the Golics at school, and we got to hangout backstage at a Chesney concert. It was a lot of fun.
A hidden talent others might not be aware of?
KR: Basketball. And my golf game, too. Though, that is strictly in the scramble format.
Best hoops player in the NFL?
KR: Tony Gonzalez, Antonio Gates. I might be biased, but I think tight ends make the best basketball players.
Could you take Gonzalez in a hoops game, one-on-one?
KR: I am bigger than he is. It would be a good game. But I am confident in my ability.
Gonzalez was the first guy you followed on Twitter. Who is a must-follow from the NFL?
KR: Has to be Ochocinco. He’s always up to something.