New York Giants looking to add running back depth ahead of postseason push

new york giants, darrell henderson
Sep 8, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Rams running back Darrell Henderson Jr. (27) runs the ball in the second half against the Buffalo Bills at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants are inching closer to their first playoff berth since 2016. At 8-5-1, Big Blue is on the cusp of clinching a spot in the postseason. Star running back Saquon Barkley has been a huge part of the team’s success this season. But as the Giants prepare for the playoffs, they have started looking to add running back depth to their roster. New York had a trio of rushers in the building for workouts this week, looking to bolster the backfield behind Barkley for the home stretch of the season.

Giants host running backs for tryouts

Saquon Barkley has been utterly dominant this season. After totaling just 181 carries for 627 yards, and 2 touchdowns in 15 games from 2020 to 2021, Saquon has exploded those numbers to 269 carries for 1,170 yards, and 9 touchdowns in 14 games during the 2022 season. Not many running backs have found more success than Saquon this year.

It is important to note, however, that the Giants have been feeding Barkley as much as possible. The fourth-year back out of Penn State has already surpassed his career-high in carries this season with three games left to play. Barkley is at risk of being worn down, something the Giants cannot afford heading into the postseason. A little extra depth in the backfield could go a long way toward preserving Saquon’s legs for January and potentially February football.

With that in mind, the Giants have been looking for ways to add depth to the running back position. According to Aaron Wilson, the New York Giants worked out three running backs on Tuesday. Darrell Henderson, Abram Smith, and Nate McCrary were in for a tryout.

Darrell Henderson is an interesting name for the Giants to consider. Henderson could be a solid addition to the backfield. Despite being a free agent, Darrell Henderson has starting experience and the potential to contribute quality snaps in relief of Saquon Barkley. The former Los Angeles Rams rusher was “shockingly” waived earlier this month after four years with the team. He was claimed by Jacksonville, then waived again before ever playing a snap with the Jaguars.

New York could be the next stop for Henderson as he is currently a free agent. Unlike other free agents who have been away from the game for a while, Darrell Henderson should be fit and ready for game action immediately. He played in 10 and started 7 games for the Rams this season before being released after Week 11. Henderson totaled 283 yards on 70 carries (4.0 yards per attempt) with 3 rushing touchdowns in 10 games with Los Angeles. He also contributed as a receiver out of the backfield, adding 102 receiving yards on 17 receptions. The New York Giants could get a real contributor in Darrell Henderson if they decide to sign him before the season’s end.

The other two running backs that the Giants brought in this week are less notable and less likely to make an impact. Abram Smith is an undrafted rookie who currently plays for the DC Defenders of the XFL. Smith does not have any regular-season experience in the NFL. He was signed by the New Orleans Saints in May but waived during the pre-season in August.

Nate McCrary is also minimally experienced. He has spent time with four different NFL teams, failing to find a home, and failing to see the field. During his career, McCrary has taken one handoff for -1 yard. Most recently, Nate McCrary was on the Carolina Panthers practice squad before being released last week.

If the New York Giants are interested in adding a backup running back with solid NFL experience, Darrell Henderson is the clear and obvious choice. The fourth-year back has 396 regular season carries to his name, totaling 1742 rushing yards and 13 rushing touchdowns in his career. Darrell Henderson could be the perfect lowkey-signing for the New York Giants as they look to add depth to their backfield.

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