The ex-Hearts captain has been training at Murray Park with a view to Ally McCoist adding him to the Ibrox squad and Paterson expects that he is a player who can make an immediate impact.
McCoist has completely overhauled the squad from last season with a clutch of players making a real difference to the pace and tempo at which they approach games
While last term in the Third Division their efforts were laboured, this time around they - rightly - look like head and shoulders above those around them.
And while there was criticism about the money that has been spent on players ' wages this summer, Paterson believes that McCoist is already building a squad that will be suitable to play in the top flight.
"I saw quite a bit of Hearts last term and I thought that Zaliukas and Andy Webster had one of the best defensive partnerships in the league," he said.
"At 29, he is at an age where he has bags of experience but still has a lot of years in the game ahead of him.
"He is an international player who has excellent leadership qualities and I do think that Ranges look really short in the centre of defence.
"It allows McCoist to play Lee McCulloch further up the pitch and it really gives him a few options if something can be sorted to bring him on board.
"He is a free agent so he is not going to cost a penny to bring in, other than wages. And he is a player that I think could make an outstanding contribution.
"He is a guy whom you could fully expect to still be about when Rangers get themselves into the Premiership.
"He has all the attributes required to be a top Rangers centre-half and I fully expect that if the move goes through that he'll be a mainstay in that position for the foreseeable future."
The difference between Rangers this season and last is marked and Paterson believes that much of that comes down to attitude as well as the quality that McCoist has added to his ranks.
The likes of Nicky Law and Jon Daly made their mark quickly at the club, but it is the difference in mental approach to games that he has noticed most.
"Last season we saw what happens when you go into games thinking, 'this is the Third Division and we aren't Third Division players'," said Paterson.
"This season what I think we have seen from Rangers is a team who believe that they will soon be in the Premiership - but are prepared to prove their class.
"They have taken games by the scruff of the neck, they have played with the kind of pace that they would have been accustomed to in the top flight and they have shown that they are better than what is around about them."
The off-field turmoil continues to rage at the club with boardroom struggles dominating the agenda at the troubled club.
Yet, it is the supporters and what they make the club on a Saturday afternoon that Paterson attributes as the reason why there are no shortage of players prepared to leave the Premiership to drop down into League One football.
"The club is a monster," said Paterson. "I am sure that guys like Zaliukas will have had a fair few offers from elsewhere, but if you have played against Rangers then you know what they can offer you on a game day.
"I am not saying that the off-field stuff doesn't have an impact. Between a Monday to a Friday I think it can create uncertainty and an ill-feeling.
"However, good players are able to walk out onto a football park and get their minds on nothing more than a game off football.
"To me, McCoist has been able to get the message through that this team will be back at the top within the next few years - but that they will have to work for it. "