3 veterans the Carolina Panthers could sign with open roster spot

(Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) Xavier Rhodes
(Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) Xavier Rhodes /
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Carolina Panthers
(Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports) Xavier Rhodes /

Carolina Panthers could sign Xavier Rhodes

Rashaan Melvin’s retirement and Jaycee Horn going on the active-physically unable to perform list means the Carolina Panthers are a little light of cornerback options. Hopefully, the former No. 8 overall selection can get back quickly, but adding another veteran wouldn’t be the worst idea in the world in any case.

One prominent name remaining on the free-agent market is Xavier Rhodes. The All-Pro remains without employment after the Indianapolis Colts went with Stephon Gilmore instead and although his best days are seemingly behind him, the Florida State product might have something left in the tank.

Rhodes was the best cornerback in football once upon a time. His 2017 campaign with the Minnesota Vikings was a masterclass in shutdown coverage from start to finish and even though things ended sourly under Mike Zimmer, his move to Indianapolis came with improvements more often than not.

There’s every chance Rhodes might be waiting for a contender to come calling at this stage of his career. But the Panthers could benefit from someone with his experience in pursuit of guiding the likes of Horn, C.J. Henderson, and Keith Taylor Jr. to similar feats moving forward.

Rhodes gave up 60.7 percent of targets thrown his way last season and a 97.0 passer rating when targeted. So it’s an option worth considering if Carolina decides to replace Melvin.