One of the first things you notice when looking up college stats for USC’s Rhett Ellison is that he’s listed under two different positions. That’s because after three years of playing tight end, Ellison was asked by USC head coach Lane Kiffin to read up and become the team's starting fullback.
With football in the 2011 co-captain’s blood—his father, Riki, played linebacker at USC before playing professionally for the San Francisco 49ers and Los Angeles Raiders—Ellison is not only solid and reliable at any position he plays, but has a great work ethic and passion for the game.
CBSSport’s Dane Brugler calls Ellison “a true hustle player ... playing every play as if it’s his last.”
WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY
While Ellison isn’t very fast, he is speedy off the line of scrimmage and a good route runner. And while his average size and strength won’t overwhelm the defensive players he’ll face in the NFL, he has the tough exterior to take a hit, and he catches just about anything that comes his way.
ProFootballWeekly says Ellison has large hands and is versatile. They even go so far as to say that he’ll “outplay other tight ends drafted ahead of him.”
Rhett Ellison figures to make a big impact on special teams for the Vikings.
His versatility and work ethic will give him a lot of opportunities as a rookie special teamer. His solid skill set at multiple positions will allow him more playing time in Minnesota than lots of other draft prospects capable of playing special teams or the secondary.