Rhodes are closed in Minnesota thanks to Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes. NFL.com’s James Jones believes he is the best player in the NFL at his position.
Ever since being the 25th overall selection in the 2013 NFL Draft, the Minnesota Vikings have been able to rely on cornerback Xavier Rhodes to hold his own against some of the best receivers in the NFL.
The Florida State defender didn’t arrive in the NFL playing at an All-Pro level. After adjustments to his game through hard work, coaching, and experience, he has become one of the premier players at his position in the league.
Just how good Rhodes is can be debated. Comparing him to his peers places him among the best at what he does, but NFL.com’s James Jones believes he is the current best player at his position according to his list of top 10 cornerbacks for 2018.
Here is what Jones said about Rhodes performance last season and physical ability that placed him first on the list:
"“In coverage in 2017, Rhodes gave up just two touchdowns, a 79.0 passer rating against and a 54.7 completion percentage when targeted. He can cover on the outside, inside or in the slot, and his size (6-foot-1, 218 pounds) and physicality at the line of scrimmage give receivers fits, making it hard for them to create separation, because he can push receivers off their routes.”"
Fans may remember James Jones from his time in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers and the Oakland Raiders where he met up with Rhodes on a couple of occasions, leaving a great impression on the former divisional opponent.
"“I’ve gone head-to-head with Rhodes, and these qualities, coupled with his ability to play bump-and-run and off coverage well, make him a nightmare matchup on the island.”"
Not only is it fun to see a former Packers receiver showing a lot of love for a Vikings defender, but it is well-earned. Rhodes has become a true threat to opposing offenses and is an essential part of the team’s top-ranked defense from the 2017 NFL season.
The best part of Rhodes’ dominance is that he is under contract with he signed a 5-year contract extension with Minnesota in July 2017, keeping him with the franchise through the 2022 NFL season.
What do you think of James Jones’ countdown of the best cornerbacks entering the 2018 NFL season? Is Xavier Rhodes really that good? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.