The New York Giants are a storied franchise. From Frank Gifford to Lawrence Taylor to Michael Strahan and everyone in between, the Giants have had some of the greatest players in NFL history. For years, Giants fans have been able to hold their heads up high; sadly that is no longer the case.
The Giants have an amazing weapon in running back Saquon Barkley and he is being wasted. In Sunday’s 35 – 17 loss to their division rivals, the Dallas Cowboys, Barkley rushed for 120 yards on 11 carries. Under no circumstance does it make sense to only give your most potent player 11 carries when he is playing as well as Barkley was. You won’t see Alvin Kamara of the Saints or Christian McCaffrey of the Panthers get so few rushes when they are running well. Cowboys’ running back Ezekiel Elliot, who was on a “pitch count” and ran for much fewer yards than Barkley, got more carries. This just doesn’t make sense.
To his credit, when asked about it, Barkley was the consummate professional. He answered questions and proclaimed that he is ready to do whatever the team needs from him, whether it means him getting 11 carries or many more.
The typically maligned offensive line played well yesterday. They kept quarterback Eli Manning upright and opened holes for Barkley. The play-calling was questionable. An example of this took place when the Giants on consecutive plays, a third and one as well as a fourth and one had Manning roll out and pass the ball, both times unsuccessfully. To try it once on third down in an attempt to confuse the defense, I can understand but once it didn’t work and you are faced with a fourth-down it is time to put the ball in your best play-makers’ hands.
At times it seems like there is no real plan by head coach Pat Shurmur and the laissez-faire attitude he often displays does not help his cause. He needs to use Barkley better or he won’t have the opportunity much longer.