NFL Mock Draft 2013: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Select Xavier Rhodes

USA TODAY Sports

With the thirteenth overall pick in the 2013 Canal Street Chronicles community mock draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (represented by jeff.l.b) select...

Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State


Xavier Rhodes

#27 / Defensive Back / Florida St. Seminoles

6-2

217

junior

With the thirteenth overall pick in the 2013 Canal Street Chronicles community mock draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers select...Darrelle Revis, CB, NY Jets.

Wait?...what do you mean I can't do that? But it's going to happen anyway! Fine...fine, have it your way.

With the thirteenth overall pick in the 2013 Canal Street Chronicles community mock draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers select...Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have more than a few holes that they need to fill come draft day on April 25th. With potential top 5 pick Star Lotulelei still on the board at 13, it seemed like a near lock in my mind for him to fill the gap in the Bucs defensive line created by the departure of starting defensive tackle Roy Miller. However, with Miami Dolphins making the selection just ahead of the Bucs, their selection plan became much more simple.

In 2012 the Bucs posted the 32nd ranked pass defense in the NFL surrendering just shy of three hundred yards per game at 297. Unfortunately for Tampa, this was not a case of surrender yards without points in a bend but not break style. Tampa compounded the yards by surrendering the fifth most touchdown passes at 30 and the 6th worst passer rating numbers at a staggering 93.5. Top that all off with a mind-blowing completion percentage against of 65% and it all becomes perfectly clear where the problems lie. The secondary of the Tampa Bay Bucs was beyond woeful and should be the number 1 priority for the team.

With the signing of Dashon Goldson in free agency, Tampa now has a solid pair of safeties as Goldson will combine with second year stalwart Mark Barron. Now the focus is on the cornerback position where currently the Bucs have one starter on the roster and appear more than ready to unload him or give him an outright release in Eric Wright. All this of course leads to the reasons why the Bucs pull the trigger on drafting cornerback Darrelle Revis from the collegiate powerhouse New York Jets. What? Still can't do that...fine. BUT IT'S HAPPENING ANYWAY! Sigh, I of course mean drafting Xavier Rhodes from Florida State.

On paper, Xavier Rhodes has all the physical tools and skills needed to excel at the next level. A big framed cornerback at 6'2" and 210 lbs, Rhodes is an excellent press corner with the ability to shadow even quick twitch inside receivers. Xavier showed his ball skills in college recording 31 passes defended at his time at Florida State and eight interceptions. His skill at being able to mirror and shadow receivers is bolstered by the fact that coming out of High School Rhodes was regarded as a three star wide receiver. This knowledge of receiver position is what helps allow Rhodes to play with great route anticipation, although be warned it has also led him to become susceptible to double moves.

Rhodes does come with some drawbacks, however. Where Rhodes excels in press coverage he in turn struggles in zone. At times Rhodes has difficulty passing off receivers and seems to lack the ability or knowledge to effectively close on those entering or leaving his area of assignment. Where his size allows him to hold up well against the run, Rhodes has a poor habit of leaving his feet early causing him to occasionally miss tackles in a Roman Harperesque desire to level a big hit. Additionally Rhodes also comes with some level of injury concern having suffered a hand injury in college that granted him a medical redshirt as well as a knee injury requiring surgery in 2011.

Xavier Rhodes had a solid combine which allowed him to cement his first round status. His 4.43 forty yard dash time displayed his more than adequate straight line speed, however it was his explosiveness that stood out. Rhodes not only posted an 11 foot broad jump, well above the average for a wide receiver, but also a 40 ½ inch vertical jump. Rhodes' size plus his leaping ability will allow Tampa to easily play him 1 on 1 in goal line situations to potentially completely lock down big wide outs on jump balls and fades in a hope to curtail the 30 pass touchdowns they surrendered.

Rhodes will make an excellent addition to the Bucs and help close off a giant need. However, if Rhodes is off the board do not be shocked to see Tampa either select Washington CB Desmond Trufant. If both corners are gone, or if the Bucs feel 13 is too high for the selection, Tampa can easily shift priorities to the two other positions of need in WR Tavon Austin out of West Virginia or Notre Dame TE, Tyler Eifert.

Thanks to all the CSC members who participated in this year's community mock draft. Without your help, none of this would be possible.

Below are the complete results from our community mock draft.

Catch up with all of the mock draft selections in our 2013 CSC Community Draft Section.

Pick Team Selection Team Representative Approval Rating
1 Kansas City Chiefs OT Luke Joeckel - Texas A&M
Hans Petersen 77%
2 Jacksonville Jaguars QB Geno Smith - West Virginia
Dragon Ninja Warrior 48%
3 Oakland Raiders CB Dee Milliner - Alabama
Ralph Malbrough 42%
4 Philadelphia Eagles OT Eric Fisher - Central Mich.
Aburton531 78%
5 Detroit Lions DE Dion Jordan - Oregon
ShadowFlash 50%
6 Cleveland Browns DE/OLB Ezekiel Ansah - BYU
Fan since the Aints 54%
7 Arizona Cardinals OT Lane Johnson - Oklahoma
Joseph Williams Stern 94%
8 Buffalo Bills G Chance Warmack - Alabama
aburton531 52%
9 NY Jets S Kenny Vaccaro - Texas
organictallman 33%
10 Tennessee Titans G Jonathan Cooper - UNC
cajuncommando58 67%
11 San Diego Chargers DT Sharrif Floyd - Florida
lostastic
12 Miami Dolphins DT Star Lotulelei- Utah Ralph Malbrough
13 Tampa Bay Buccaneers CB Xavier Rhodes - Florida St. jeff.l.b
14 Carolina Panthers
Stilljreming
15 New Orleans Saints
Dave Cariello
16 St. Louis Rams
caomhin
17 Pittsburgh Steelers
aryanspecial
18 Dallas Cowboys
SAINTMANUMIT
19 NY Giants
BlackandGold4ever
20 Chicago Bears
MobileSaint
21 Cincinnati Bengals
Fan since the Aints
22 St. Louis Rams (from Washington)
Kevin Held
23 Minnesota Vikings
cajuncommando58
24 Indianapolis Colts
Legatron Morstead
25 Minnesota Vikings (from Seattle)
Fan since the Aints
26 Green Bay Packers
caomhin
27 Houston Texans
TeeThaKingSaint23
28 Denver Broncos
aburton531
29 New England Patriots
ShadowFlash
30 Atlanta Falcons
Dave Choate
31 San Francisco 49ers
BlackandGold4ever
32 Baltimore Ravens
NawlinsOriole
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