Minnesota Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes has risen up the ranks since his rookie season. Selected in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft, Rhodes became a full-time starter and recorded his first career interception last year.
While Rhodes appears to be on the fast track to stardom, Bleacher Report’s Cian Fahey is warning fans to pump the brakes. Fahey conducted a very convincing film analysis to help prove his point.
Upon careful examination of Rhodes’ 220 "qualifying snaps" from the 2014 season, Fahey found that the young cornerback’s coverage was only in position 138 times—an "unimpressive" success rate of 62.7 percent.
Article continues below ...
The player Rhodes covered most successfully was New Orleans’ Brandin Cooks, as Fahey found him to be in position for 86 percent of his qualifying snaps against Cooks. The player who gave Rhodes the most trouble was New England’s Julian Edelman, who was successfully covered for only 30 percent of qualifying snaps.
According to Fahey’s analysis, there were two games in which Rhodes failed his coverage more often than not (Week 2 vs. the Patriots; Week 15 vs. the Lions). His highest number of failed coverages came in Week 7 against the Bills (10).
Overall, Rhodes is still a "solid starter," according to Fahey, but the analyst pointed to the corner’s lack of strength as the root cause for many of his failed coverages. At only 25 years old, Rhodes still has time to bulk up and become one of the best cornerbacks in the league.