Inside Saquon Barkley’s Huge Week 1 Performance For Giants

Saquon Barkley, Giants
NFL Analysis Network

Arguably the biggest upset in Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season came courtesy of the New York Giants. It was the first game of Brian Daboll’s tenure as head coach and the team was facing a huge test going on the road against the Tennessee Titans.

Tennessee finished as the No. 1 seed in the AFC last season before being knocked out of the playoffs in the Divisional Round by the Cincinnati Bengals. They wanted to get things back on track and looked to be well on their way to starting 1-0 as they held a 13-0 lead at halftime.

While Giants teams of recent years would have folded like a cheap suit, this is a new era for Big Blue. Whatever was said at halftime of the game worked as Daboll had the Giants firing on all cylinders.

New York won the game 22-21, as Daboll made a gutsy call going for two with his team garnering all of the momenta after scoring a touchdown. He put the ball in the hands of his most explosive playmaker, running back Saquon Barkley, and he willed himself into the endzone.

Barkley showed that explosiveness and power that made him the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft on the two-point conversion. The Titans schemed perfectly to stop the play, but sometimes talent will trump schematics and in this case, it was true as Barkley made a play and put the Giants ahead.

Barkley has been hampered the last few seasons by injuries and ineffectiveness behind an abysmal offensive line. But, in Week 1 against the Titans, Barkley looked like the rookie version of himself.

He finished the game with 164 rushing yards on 18 carries and one touchdown. He added six receptions for 30 yards, carrying the Giants’ offense. As shared by PFF, Barkley had arguably the best week of any offensive player in the league.

In addition to the total yardage, Barkley finished with 123 rushing yards after contact, which was first in the league and had three 15+ yard rushes, which was tied for first.

With an improved offensive line and the coaching looking to be light years ahead of what Barkley played under the first four seasons of his career, the opportunity is there for him to get his career back on track. After one game, he looks to be all the way back as PFF said, providing some excitement for a Giants team that has lacked it in recent years under Dave Gettleman.