Cody signed a development contract with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in June 2006, at the age of twenty one. On May 13th he made his debut in WWE's development territory, Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), defeating in tandem with Elijah Burke Jack Bull and Pat Buck.
On August 11th, he and his father Dusty Rhodes defeated Stevens and James. Together with Shawn Spears he won the OVW Southern Tag Team Championship, but the title was declared vacant after a match ended in a draw. After becoming a Triple Crown Champion in OVW, he was promoted to WWE's main roster in 2007 and remained there for nine years, performing under his real name and later as Stardust.
During his time with WWE, Rhodes became a two-time Intercontinental Champion and was a prolific tag team wrestler, winning six tag team championships (three World Tag Team Championships and three WWE Tag Team Championships) with four separate tag team partners.
Rhodes left WWE after requesting his release in May 2016. On January 1, 2019, Cody unveiled a new promotion, All Elite Wrestling (AEW), in which he, along with Matt and Nick Jackson of The Young Bucks and Kenny Omega, would serve as Executive Vice Presidents and on-air talent.
Both Cody and The Young Bucks signed five-year contracts with the promotion. Speaking with Tony Schiavone, Cody talked about his future: “So I’m gonna be 35 in June, and I said I’m only gonna do this till 40 years old.
I don’t know if that’s accurate. Rarely ever in wrestling, but that’s what I said. And I want to make sure that two people in particular never have to work a day in their life. That’s my wife, who will choose to work every day because that’s who she is, and my mother who refuses to acknowledge that I’m still trying to do everything I can to take care of her … but I want to make sure they know that I did it, and I did it in wrestling”.