RB Saquon Barkley
Postgame vs. Cleveland
August 9, 2018
Q: What went through your head when you saw some space after you made that cut?
A: Youíre just so locked in the moment and youíre just living in the moment that you really donít even notice whatís going on in your head, but the offensive line did a great job with blocking up front, creating space. Evan (Engram) made an unbelievable block there and I was able to create some space and get a big gain.
Q: Eli has been quizzing you on routes. Was that something that had been drawn out before for you?
A: You mean some other quarterbacks Iíve played with? No. Iíve never really been quizzed on routes. He actually does quiz me like heís my teacher. Itís been very helpful to me, just sort of checks and balances, making sure where I need to be, my mindset is where it needs to be, know where I need to be at especially in the route formation and the route scheme, just to help other routes open up.
Q: I know this wasnít a game that counted, but it was your first time under the lights in the pros. What was your emotion coming in and what did it feel like during the game?
A: It was kind of weird. I was talking to a lot of guys there. For some reason I didnít get nervous, I didnít really get anxious. It was kind of a weird feeling. They said it would probably hit me when the national anthem goes off, but I kind of just got locked in so quick, I just have been preparing for this moment for my whole life and being able to play in the NFL, and I didnít want any other thing to ruin it. If I had broken a long run, no, I just wanted to go out there and enjoy, and have fun, and take advantage of every rep and every opportunity I got.
Q: Did you expect to feel nervous? Did you want to be nervous?
A: Yeah, I expected to be nervous because since high school on, I was nervous in high school Ė not nervous, I think anxious is the word, because nervous is kind of like youíre scared. I just needed that first hit, I was just so ready for that moment, it was kind of weird. One of the coaches told me that he said itís going to get worse, donít worry, so definitely preparing for that. Just excited to live my life and live the dream I planned.
Q: You only get one shot to make a first impression. Is it satisfying that that is how Giants fans saw you for the first time?
A: I think it was more satisfying to me just because of the scenario. We were backed up tight, to be able to get us out running from, I think we were on the 12-yard line, and then to break out a 40-yard run really [helped] our offense out and we had a great drive. We just got to find a way to finish it. It was more exciting in that it was helping the team out, we were getting a drive started, starting off quick, more than making a first impression.
Q: What are two or three aspects of the game you really focused on?
A: One definitely was pass [protection], knowing what I needed to do and seeing my guys. I didnít really get a chance to pick up a block today. I didnít have one to pick up really, it wasnít my responsibility, and being patient in the run game, creating a pull, setting up pulls. The third thing was being me, go back to being me. I have so many people outside of my family saying Iíve got to do this, Iíve got to be this, they have expectations for this and that, but the main focus was just to put that all aside, put that all to rest and not even focus on it. Just go out there and be a little kid again and play football.
Q: What are you looking forward to [moving forward]?
A: Learning. Learning throughout the whole game, even though I wasnít in the second, third, or fourth quarter, and I split reps with [Jonathan Stewart] in the beginning and learn from his reps, learn from [Robert Martin] who played amazing, and [Simmons] who played amazing, learn from Wayne [Gallman Jr.] and continue to grow as a player.