That’s quiet a bold statement to make in July, isn’t it? Maybe it’s not so far-fetched. If you watched any Penn State Football over the last three years, the most dominant player on the field has more times than not been Saquon Barkley. He has has gained notoriety for not only his work on the field, but his relentless work ethic in the weight room. You can just go to Twitter or Instagram and see the ridiculous amount of weight this man can move around.
— New York Giants (@Giants) July 7, 2018
We saw all this very early on at Penn State. In his first year with the Nittany Lions, all Barkley did was set a school record for a freshmen with 1,076 yards (182 carries, with seven touchdowns; 20 receptions, 161 yards, TD) and earn Freshman All-American and second-team All-Big Ten honors. His highlight was a game at Ohio State in which he ran for 195 yards and two touchdowns in Columbus.
As a sophomore, Barkley didn’t let up. He was Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year after running for 1,496 yards and 18 touchdowns (tied for sixth in the FBS). He capped off his incredible second season with a legendary performance in the Rose Bowl against USC. He dominated the game with 204 yards and two scores.
Penn State began limiting some of Barkley’s carries in his junior year, resulting in just 1,271 rushing yards on the season. But in other departments, he racked up some big numbers. He had 632 yards receiving with three touchdowns, 423 return yards with two game-opening scores, and even threw two touchdown passes! The young man can do it all and WILL do whatever it takes to win. These efforts last season earned him his second consecutive Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year award.
So what are the Giants getting with Saquon Barkley? They’re getting someone who could be THE guy for a long time in New York. He is an every-down running back with the ability to alter the course of an offense and has the rare ability to create additional yardage through elusiveness, speed, vision and feel for space in the open field. His versatility makes him a movable piece in whatever offense the Giants decide to run.
Does he make them a contender right away? Potentially, with other pieces and a defense. But there’s a very good chance you’ll see this rookie phenom in the Pro-Bowl and receiving awards at the pro-level for many years to come. Go make us proud Saquon.