Eagles Nearly Land New $68 Million Starter: Report

Howie Roseman Nick Sirianni

Getty The Philadelphia Eagles nearly landed safety Xavier McKinney over the Green Bay Packers.

The Philadelphia Eagles had an aggressive start to NFL free agency, but the team was in pursuit of one more additional signing. The Athletic’s Dianna Russini reported the Eagles were battling the Green Bay Packers for safety Xavier McKinney. Ultimately, McKinney agreed to terms on a new four-year, $68 million deal with the Packers, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

“The Eagles were in…Packers win it,” Russini detailed in a March 11, 2024 message on X.

The NFL insider previously labeled McKinney a “top target” for the Eagles. There is still good news for Philadelphia as plenty of veteran safeties remain unsigned. Heading into free agency, 94 WIP Philadelphia’s Eliot Shorr-Parks predicted the Eagles will conduct some “aggressive spending at safety.”

“I think the Eagles are going to be aggressive spending at safety,” Shorr-Parks noted in a March 7 message on X. “The question is which one they go after.

“Xavier McKinney is arguably the best available and is only 25. Justin Simmons checks a ton of boxes — but is 30. Lots of good options.”

Eagles Rumors: Philly Target Xavier McKinney’s $68 Million Deal Far Exceeded His $52 Million Projected Market Value

Prior to joining the Packers, McKinney spent four seasons with the New York Giants starting in 46 games. The Giants selected McKinney in the second round of the 2020 NFL draft with the No. 36 overall pick.

McKinney has emerged as one of the top safeties in the NFL as his big payday indicates. The safety earned an 87.8 grade from Pro Football Focus for his play in 2023.

McKinney earned a significant raise from his four-year, $8.3 million rookie deal. The defender landed a deal much higher than his projected market value of a five-year, $52.4 million contract, per Spotrac.

Eagles News: Philadelphia Was One of the Most Active Teams at the Start of NFL Free Agency

Despite striking out on McKinney, the Eagles were still one of the more active teams on the first day of NFL free agency. As a reminder, teams were permitted to meet with free agents on March 11, but no deals can become official until March 13.

The Eagles agreed to terms with the following players: running back Saquon Barkley, pass rusher Bryce Huff and linebacker Zack Baun. Philly also lost starting running back D’Andre Swift to the Chicago Bears.

Saquon Barkley on Playing in Philadelphia: ‘The Atmosphere & Environment Is Going to be Completely Different’

During an exclusive interview with Heavy Sports in January, Barkley compared and contrasted the different environments within the NFC East. Barkley discussed the intensity that exists with Philly fans.

“I would say probably the biggest difference is Philly, when you go to Philly,” Barkley said at the time. “Just the atmosphere and environment is going to be completely different. Jerry World is more of like bright lights, dope stadium. Philly’s more like you’re going to have kids with moms and dads cursing you out. Fans just talking all kind of nonsense to you, and you just gotta block out the noise.”

The Eagles headed into free agency with $40.3 million in cap space, per Spotrac. It will be worth watching how the structures of these initial deals will impact Philly’s remaining cap room.