Packers add one of the top safeties on free agent market

Safety is expected to take on added importance in new defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley’s scheme and Green Bay put its wallet behind that notion Monday when agreeing to a deal with free agent Xavier McKinney.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter was the first to report the deal, including it being for four years and $68 million.

The 24-year-old McKinney spent the first four years of his career with the New York Giants after being drafted out of Alabama in the second round in 2020. Limited to six games as a rookie, McKinney started 42 of a possible 51 games the last three years, including all 17 in 2023. He totaled eight interceptions and 26 passes defended in those three seasons. That included three picks, 11 pass breakups and a career-high 116 tackles this past year.

Pro Football Focus ranked him among the top-10 safeties against the pass and against the rush in 2023, while also being a sure tackler. He will step into a safety room that will likely have even more new faces before a snap is taken this fall. Already gone is Darnell Savage, who agreed to a three-year deal with Jacksonville on Monday, while Rudy Ford and Jonathan Owens are also free agents.