Has Giants’ Xavier McKinney earned a long-term extension?

New York Giants safety Xavier McKinney (29) speaks during a press conference after the first day of training camp at Quest Diagnostics Training Facility
Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

Looking ahead to the offseason, the New York Giants have a few key starters who will be unrestricted free agents. Starting safety Xavier McKinney is one of those players currently playing on an expiring contract and the big question is, has he done enough to earn a long-term extension?

Xavier McKinney is seemingly unhappy with the front office

The Giants appear to be in rebuilding mode, sitting with a 2-6 record and having just traded away Leonard Williams for a haul of future draft capital.

The trade seemingly ruffled some feathers in the locker room, most notably those of McKinney. He called out the front office for focusing on “future stuff,” rather than the task of trying to win now.

McKinney’s comments were shocking, but this was not the first time he has made controversial comments this season.

With McKinney appearing to be disgruntled by the team’s direction, he could be weighing his future options as an impending free agent. The Giants are doing the same as McKinney attempts to prove himself worthy of an offseason extension.

Should the Giants extend McKinney in the offseason?

Earlier this year, the Giants made the decision not to discuss a contract extension with McKinney mid-season. The front office planned to “get through the season” before negotiating with the 24-year-old safety. This decision afforded the team an extended opportunity to evaluate McKinney’s performance before locking him down long-term.

At the end of this season, however, McKinney will be an unrestricted free agent and Big Blue will need to decide if he has performed well enough to earn an extension.

This season, McKinney has totaled 43 combined tackles, one forced fumble, and six passes defended in eight games. However, he has yet to record a tackle for loss or snag his first interception of the season. He has also missed four tackles this season (8.5%) and surrendered a 60.7% completion rate in coverage.

San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle (85) is tackled by New York Giants safety Xavier McKinney (29) during the third quarter at Levi's Stadium
September 21, 2023; Santa Clara, California, USA; San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle (85) is tackled by New York Giants safety Xavier McKinney (29) during the third quarter at Levi’s Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

It has been a mediocre season for McKinney who needed a standout campaign to earn top-of-the-market money on his next deal.

Unfortunately, considering his career has been plagued by injuries and has featured some questionable moments in the media, it is difficult to say that McKinney has already earned a long-term contract extension. The final nine games of the season will be crucial for McKinney as he aims to earn a big pay-day in the offseason.

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