Player Capsule: J'Marcus Rhodes
Weight: 207 pounds
2015 season quick review: Last season Rhodes played at Kilgore Junior College where he was a four-star recruit, rated as the No. 30 overall junior college prospect nationally in the class.
SunDevilSource.com analysis: ASU knew it needed junior college help last year when it experienced major depth and talent issues in its secondary during the season. It eventually signed mid-year enrollees J'Marcus Rhodes and Maurice Chandler, with both players enrolling for the spring. Neither participated through the entire spring period, with Chandler injured and Rhodes missing about half the team's practices due to what was termed a personal matter.
In the spring Rhodes worked at cornerback but as practices got underway in August he transitioned to safety, and that's where he figures to get an opportunity to see the field early in the season. A bigger defensive back, Rhodes is angular, lanky, and more of a glider than a quick twitch athlete. His length is an asset in terms of coverage ability and range on the field.
Rhodes fits the ASU scheme as a versatile defensive back who can run with receivers and close down space, but he'll need to be a very cerebral player to make a major impact in the Pac-12. He doesn't have the margin of error of others in the ASU secondary because he doesn't re-direct quite as well from an athletic standpoint.
When his technique is good, however, Rhodes has a chance to be very effective, particularly as he has the size and ball skills to be disruptive when in phase, and the capacity to come downhill and make tackles due to his length and heft. He's largely untested and we've seen almost none of Rhodes in a true football setting, so there's still much to learn about him from an evaluation standpoint.
Projected depth chart status: Rhodes looks like the No. 4 safety right now behind Laiu Moeakiola, Armand Perry and Chad Adams. But Moeakiola is injured and may not play in the season opener so Rhodes could be the first safety off the bench for the Sun Devils. He's also capable of playing cornerback in a reserve capacity.