New York Giants RB Saquon Barkley spoke to the media in the locker room this past Friday and detailed his intentions to be committed to the team long-term and to break one of their franchise records.
Barkley Within Range of Moving Up Giants’ All-Time Rushing Leaderboard
Ahead of the Giants’ Week 9 game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Barkley declared that he wants to retire with the team and become their all-time leading rusher, saying:
“I love the position, I’ve been vocal about the history of it. Cool moment for me. Right now I think I’m fifth all-time rushing in the franchise. I plan to find a way to figure out how to be one. That’s a goal of mine,” Barkley said before taking his long-term stance. “I’ve never changed my opinion of me not wanting to be a Giant for life. I was drafted here and when I got drafted here I had a mindset and a goal of playing so I would love for those things to happen.”
Barkley is fifth in rushing with 4,661 total yards and has a ways to go to catch franchise leader Tiki Barber, who collected 10,449 yards on the ground in his 10-year career with the Giants.
Barkley has battled injuries throughout his career and just recently overcame an ankle sprain that cost him two games this season. His 71.7 yards per game exceed that of Barber’s 67.9 yards per contest. At just 26 years of age, Barkley has a realistic shot of catching Barber within the next handful of seasons if his body holds up.
Realistically, Barkley is within striking distance of passing Brandon Jacobs for fourth place this season, needing 427 yards to do so. He’ll need to end the season on a hot streak with 209 yards on top of that to leapfrog Joe Morris for third.
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Another Franchise Tag Not Deterring Barkley From Seeking Long-Term Extension
When addressing where he stands with the Giants moving forward, Barkley sounded disappointed about the nature of the business leading to his franchise tag in the offseason but remained optimistic that a long-term extension will be on the horizon.
Barkley did say that he knows how much he means to his teammates in the same breath and remained steadfast in wanting to retire with Big Blue. Giants owner John Mara seconded his sentiments when he last addressed the topic, saying he wants to retain Barkley for the duration of his career.
Barley’s $10.91 million one-year deal is set to expire this winter. He trails five Giants players in annual salary and his tone suggests that he wants and expects to be higher moving into 2024. Barkley is in the prime of his career and has much more to give New York. Finding a way to salvage the remainder of this season is the top priority. Afterward, how management deals with his contract will determine whether Barkley’s mind state changes or remains the same.