Report: Giants’ Saquon Barkley being activated off PUP list, eyeing Week 1 return

New York Giants, Saquon Barkley
USA Today

Ever since the New York Giants lost Saquon Barkley in 2020 during a Week 2 regular-season game against the Chicago Bears, they’ve been waiting patiently for his return. Rehabilitating during the off-season, Barkley tore his ACL, MCL, and partially tore his meniscus.

An injury of this magnitude requires time and hard work to recover from, but he’s expected to make it 100% return this upcoming season. The Giants gained a bit of good news on Monday morning.

According to Paul Schwartz of the NY Post, star running back Saquon Barkley is preparing to rejoin the team from the PUP list this week.

Big Blue is hoping that Barkley can reach his rookie statistics, totaling over 2000 all-purpose yards and 15 touchdowns. Recording 121 targets in the receiving game, including 91 receptions, Barkley is not only a force on the ground, but through the air as well. The attention he commands from opposing defenses opens up the rest of the offense for players like Kenny Golladay and Kadarius Toney to dominate their matchups.

The last time Barkley had himself a WR1 to work with was during his rookie campaign when Odell Beckham Jr. roamed the field. While Golladay offers an entirely different style of player, thriving in possession and red zone situations, the results should be the same. Barkley forces defenses to stack the box, which ultimately takes a player out of deep coverage.

With one less safety to deal with, Golladay has more room to roam in deeper portions of the field where he can use his long frame and physical presence to overwhelm defensive backs.

The impact Saquon Barkley will have on the New York Giants is huge:

However, Barkley will also be a tremendous help to quarterback Daniel Jones, who was overrun by pass rushers last season. With an extra linebacker or safety in the box at the second level, that’ll be one less pass rusher Jones has to account for.

The expectation for the young running back is that he will be available for the team’s Week 1 matchup against the Denver Broncos, barring any setbacks. Head coach Joe Judge indicated they would be having daily conversations regarding his rehab and making sure he’s on pace to make an impact his upcoming year. It’s all about daily progress instead of a timetable for return, Joe mentioned.

Barkley has been rather skeptical about his comeback this off-season, but to no one’s surprise, he’s making fantastic progress and should be ready to go in a few weeks.