Giants’ Xavier McKinney Suffers Broken Foot

Giants rookie safety Xavier McKinney fractured the fifth metatarsal on his left foot, per a club announcement. The second-round pick out of Alabama will undergo surgery on Wednesday afternoon and he’s likely to miss at least a couple months of action. 

McKinney was expected to be a contributor in the Giants’ secondary, serving as the understudy to Julian Love at free safety. Instead, he’ll likely start the year on injured reserve before, hopefully, rejoining the club down the stretch.

Like Landon Collins in 2016, the Giants used an early second-round pick to draft McKinney out of Alabama. The standout Crimson Tide safety was on the first-round radar, starting for the past two seasons and registering 95 tackles, three sacks and three interceptions in 2019. He represents a key long-term piece alongside contract-year safety Jabrill Peppers.

This represents another major blow to a Giants secondary already without 2019 first-round pick DeAndre Baker, who currently resides on the commissioner’s exempt list. The Giants ranked 31st in pass-defense DVOA last season and did not make a concerted effort to upgrade their edge rush. These setbacks will make it difficult for the team to excel in this department, even considering the team’s pricey James Bradberry addition.

Several experienced veteran safeties are on the market, though the Giants do not profile as the kind of team who would win an Earl Thomas pursuit at this juncture. In addition to the recently released All-Pro, Eric Reid, Tony Jefferson, Reshad Jones and Clayton Geathers are available. The Giants did not re-sign 36-year-old Antoine Bethea, who started 16 games for them last season.

The Giants also lost linebacker David Mayo, who will go under the knife following a meniscus tear in his left knee. Luckily, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com says Mayo will just need a meniscus trim rather than a full repair, so he should be able to return in about three weeks (Twitter link). The sixth-year defender started a career-high 13 games for the Giants last season, making 82 tackles.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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6 comments on “Giants’ Xavier McKinney Suffers Broken Foot

  1. ctyank7

    Giants are heading for another Top 5 pick — the big question is can Daniel Jones progress on a team with a sieve for a defense.

    • wagner13

      I say yes. Sure, the defense will likely struggle. However, that shouldn’t impact Jones in the slightest. The key difference will be offensive line improvement. Andrew Thomas could be a tremendous upgrade on the blindside, while Solder should be better served as a right tackle. Hernandez should continue to progress and Zeitler is quietly a very solid guard. Center is the obvious question mark, but since Jones had issues with his ball security, the improved pass protection will be critical to his development.

      It should also help to have a healthy Barkley and Engram. There’s no dominant receiver, but Tate/Slayton/Shepard really isn’t a bad trio. Maybe I’m leaning on the side of optimism, but I actually think Jones could have a bit of a breakout season

      • Ak185

        I say yes to Jones developing, maybe not to a breakout year statistically however. I don’t believe much in Tate, but I am impressed with Darius Slayton, who I liked at Auburn as well.

        The Giants have been snake-bitten along their offensive line. The Solder signing looked pretty solid when done, but that has turned out to be a bust. Will Hernandez started off strong, but his play dipped as his temper flared. John Jerry was not the run blocker that he was in Miami, not to mention the Ereck Flowers debacle before. Thomas’s looks like a safer pick though, and hopefully he can be the cornerstone of a new line.

        Engram is a big question, though: I don’t see NYG having a choice in retaining him, given the sheer number of positions that they could use talent at just on offense, plus his promise as a receiver and good locker room presence. Will he deliver on his potential and avoid slumps in random games (as other purely receiving tight ends often do, not just him)? I think he’s worth hanging onto. Bit NYG could use good receiving talent, multiple offensive linemen, and another tight end to not be deficient on offense. They have enough there to give Jones opportunities, but not so much that I would bet on him excelling stat-wise.

        The good news is that Jones is smart and determined, and I think will learn a lot from this year. He’ll play a lot of hero ball this year, but he may be more measured and learn a bit more about the risk taking that brought him down a bit last year. By the time NYG can field a contending level background cast, Jones’ experience this year will be invaluable in winning games. That’s my expectation, at least.

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