After spending a little time on the free-agent market, former Minnesota Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes has reportedly agreed to join the Indianapolis Colts.
A little over a week ago, the Minnesota Vikings made the decision to release longtime cornerback Xavier Rhodes. A large cap hit in 2020 combined with Rhodes experiencing a decline in his performance during the last two seasons didn’t make it very hard for the Vikings to show the corner the door.
There was some talk that Rhodes could potentially re-sign with Minnesota this year at a lower price, but those thoughts have now vanished. On Thursday, the former Vikings cornerback reportedly agreed to a one-year contract with the Indianapolis Colts according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
With this signing, Minnesota has now seen each of their top three cornerbacks from 2019 leave for a new team this offseason. Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander were the first to jump ship last week when they both signed deals with the Cincinnati Bengals.
With Rhodes, Waynes, and Alexander now gone, the best corners remaining on the Vikings’ current roster are Mike Hughes, Holton Hill, Kris Boyd, and Nate Meadors. None of these guys have more than two years of NFL experience and Hughes’ five career starts are the most of any other corner on Minnesota’s roster.
Due to this lack of experience, it will be interesting to see if the Vikings attempt to sign or trade for a veteran cornerback before next season. Rhodes’ departure also pretty much guarantees that Minnesota will be using an early-round pick on a corner in this year’s NFL Draft.
Rhodes spent the last seven seasons with the Vikings after they selected him in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft. With Mike Zimmer’s help, he was able to develop into one of the best corners in the entire league and it ultimately resulted in a First-Team All-Pro selection for him in 2017.
However, injuries and too many mental errors resulted in Rhodes seeing his performance trend in the wrong direction during each of his last two seasons with Minnesota. The Vikings were hoping that he could get back on track in 2019, but he actually ended up playing even worse than he did in 2018.
Perhaps a change of scenery will be good for Rhodes and he can get back to being a solid contributor at the very least next season. Still, the Colts only signing him to a one-year deal shows that they’re not even 100 percent convinced the veteran corner has anything left in the tank.