On Monday, the Buffalo Bills made a decision to help address some serious issues the team is having in their secondary.
After a wild streak of injuries in the Bills’ high school, ESPN reported that the team had come to terms with Xavier Rhodes to join the team’s practice squad, assuming he would join the active roster. Probably in Sunday’s game against the Baltimore Ravens. No monetary details on the one-year contract have been released.
Rhodes, 32, is a former three-time Pro Bowler who was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the first round of the 2013 draft. He is now reunited with his first head coach, Leslie Frazier, who is currently the Bills’ defensive coordinator. Rhodes has started 126 games in his career, recording 13 interceptions in those games.
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With high school injuries to Jordan Poyer, Micah Hyde, Tre’Davious White, Dane Jackson and most recently Christian Benford, it was necessary for general manager Brandon Beane to seek immediate help outside of the organization. Rhodes recently spent two seasons with the Indianapolis Colts, starting 29 games over two seasons. He suffered a calf injury last year and was ultimately not brought back for the 2022 season.
A long-term look at Xavier Rhodes’ impact on the Buffalo Bills defense
Much will depend on whether Rhodes still has something in the tank, but one possible way for him to remain an important part of that defense could possibly be to move to safety to replace Micah Hyde. While he might not be better than the team’s fourth or fifth-best cornerback if he lost a stage, his experience defending Frazier makes him a viable option to play alongside. de Poyer for the rest of the season.
- Xavier Rhodes stats (2021): 13 games, 39 tackles, 1 interception, 7 assists defended
If that transition were to fail, it would be safe to assume that Rhodes would return to the waiver wire once the other cornerbacks returned to the lineup. If he does nothing more than work with young players in a teaching role, it will still prove a worthy investment for the Bills as they try to overcome the injury bug en route to their first championship. of the team’s history.
Side bills will be tested by Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens
Beane has publicly stated that Tre’Davious White will need practice time before he finds himself in a game situation after being removed from the PUP roster next week. That most likely puts his earliest return date at Week 6 in a key game with the Kansas City Chiefs. With the Bills injury report released Wednesday night, the Bills are expected to be at least missing Benford and Jackson, in addition to White and Hyde who have been ruled out for the year.
That leaves another big role this week for rookie Kaiir Elam, who shone in his first start last week against the Dolphins. The Bills are hoping Poyer can go add veteran experience at fullback, which is badly needed with all the high school turnover.