New England Patriots Draft Prospects: Matt Elam, Xavier Rhodes

More news an updates regarding potential New England Patriots 2013 NFL Draft targets at the NFL Combine.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Florida State Seminoles cornerback Xavier Rhodes is, like Alfonzo Dennard, excellent in press coverage. But unlike Dennard, Rhodes is a big corner, and I like him a lot more than fellow big corner Desmond Trufant. Rhodes gets burned less than Trufant, but one issue is that Rhodes was never able to replicate the same great success that he showed earlier in his college career last season.

Rhodes checked in at  6-foot-1 1/2 and 210 pounds, and it looks like he has lost a little bit of weight. This shows that Rhodes, of course, would prefer to play at the cornerback position instead of safety, and I think he can do it. The big issue with Rhodes will be his speed, so we’ll see if he can run below 4.6.

Florida Gators safety Matt Elam has been knocked for his size and the fact that he isn’t a free safety, but I’m fine with both complaints from a Patriots perspective. Size doesn’t matter too much, especially at strong safety which is Elam’s natural fit. The Pats are looking for an SS opposite Devin McCourty (or, at least, they could be), and Elam is good enough in coverage to where he can also drop back and defend the pass at an above-average level when need be. Elam was measured at 5-foot-9 7/8 and 208 pounds at the Combine.

You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.

 

Topics: Florida Gators, Football, Matt Elam, New England Patriots, Xavier Rhodes

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