How will Xavier Rhodes’ time with the Vikings be remembered?

(Photo by Jorge Lemus/NurPhoto via Getty Images) Xavier Rhodes
(Photo by Jorge Lemus/NurPhoto via Getty Images) Xavier Rhodes /
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(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) Xavier Rhodes
(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) Xavier Rhodes /

Rhodes’ dramatic decline

To say things have not gone according to plan for Xavier Rhodes following his All-Pro season would be a massive understatement.

The drop-off in his production over the last two seasons was nothing short of staggering. Rhodes went from a top-end cornerback to someone that opposing teams made a point of targeting during the latter stages of the campaign.

This was absolutely incredible when one considers the player shut down one side of the field in 2017. Rhodes’ confidence also took a big hit as his influence diminished, which was something he never got back with the Vikings.

Rhodes recorded 47 combined tackles, an interception and seven pass deflections in 2018. He went from an elite player at the position to someone that head coach Mike Zimmer could not fully rely on in just a few shorts months.

Everyone is entitled to a bad season, so expectations were for better things in 2019. Sadly, for Minnesota and Rhodes, he continued to regress which led to his eventual release.

Rhodes’ frustrations came to the fore on the sidelines on more than one occasion. It was evident that his poor play, the way he was missing tackles, and getting burned in coverage even sent the player into a downward spiral.

There was no way the Vikings were going to keep him around on his current deal. There was too much incentive to release Rhodes from a financial perspective and his dismal displays on the field.