The New York Giants got a steal in the second round with one of the best safeties, Xavier McKinney. The Giants’ defense needed a playmaker at safety to help Peppers; they certainly found their guy. What separates Mckinney from others? His ability to be comfortable anywhere on the defense. This is a great sign for the Giants, especially with how this offseason is going. The global pandemic isn’t making it easy for any rookie to meet up with their coaches or members of the defense.
The New York Giants are getting a playmaker with their 2nd round pick
“Well, it’s definitely been different,” the rookie second-round pick told the Giants Huddle podcast. “The big word that I keep hearing is unique. I think our situation has been very unique just because this is the first time something like this has happened. It definitely has been a different experience, but at the same time, I never went through the [normal] experiences before.
This offseason has been everything but normal, doesn’t matter to Xavier Mckinney who has never gone through a normal experience.
“So for me, this is just something that I have to go through as far as my process and all the other rookies. But I think it’s been good overall. It’s a lot of Zoom calls, I’ll tell you that. It’s a lot of calls over the phone, which you can kind of get tired of, at times. But it’s definitely been fun. It’s a different experience and I’ve loved every bit of it.”
Giants’ fans should be thrilled with the way McKinney has approached the offseason. Eventually, the time will come where Mckinney can show the fans what he can do. I think Xavier Mckinney is at his best when he has room to roam. I say this because I want the Giants to give Mckinney the freedom he wants.
In his final season at Alabama, Mckinney played 323 snaps in the box, 227 in the slot, and 271 deep. As the stats show, McKinney was a force in the box, he can help out the Giants’ pass rush tremendously. Last year, McKinney led Alabamas’ defense with 95 tackles, and also had three sacks as a safety! Hopefully, Joe Judge and Patrick Graham scheme play Mckinney and move him all around the field. Having a guy like Mckinney is huge for the Giants’ defense, he is a complete upgrade over Landon Collins.
The New York Giants will be able to use Xavier McKinney anywhere on defense. Recently, Mckinney has been in touch with his defensive teamates, building good relationships and chemistry. I love seeing this, especially with the circumstances at hand. Most of these players can’t meet up yet, but as soon as they do, they will already of made a connection.
“I’m just ready to go and build that relationship with those guys,” McKinney said. “And actually ready to get on the field and be able to play with all these guys that I’ve seen in the past – like watched on TV. I’m ready to get things going at this point.”
A quote from Nick Saban
“Xavier has a lot of diversity as a player,” Saban said. “He can play man-to-man, he’s got pretty good ball judgment, he’s a good tackler, he’s got a lot of toughness, he’s a very instinctive and effective blitzer. He’s got some burst and acceleration to come off the edge or blitz up the middle and he’s got enough power to take on a blocker if he needs to.
“So he can do just about all the critical factors in terms of what we look for in a safety here. As he got experience, he was smart enough to be able to play multiple positions.”