Running Back Saquon Barkley
Q: How are you feeling so far Saquon?
A: I feel good, always excited, starting year five with training camp, it's fun to see some of the fans back out there, kind of getting back to the normal routine and what it was my first and second year. It's fun, you get to go out there and play the sport that you love and try to get better every day.
Q: It's really early, but how do you feel about this offense so far and the way you're being used?
A: I'm very excited, not just for myself but for all the offensive weapons. I think [Offensive Coordinator Mike] Kafka, [Head Coach Brian Daboll] Dabs, and all the offensive coaches are doing a really good job at installing it and seeing what we're able to do, and for us we've just got to get in the playbook, learn, and take it day by day.
Q: What is the challenge of all the motion where you've got to be on point before the snap?
A: Obviously you've got to be locked in, you've got to be locked in. You've got to take that time outside of football, outside of meeting rooms, to learn and know yourself. You're going to have your mistakes, it's early in camp, but that's what training camp is about. It's coming in here, trying new things, seeing what we can do as an offense, and seeing what we can add to our offensive game plan when we get ready for our season.
Q: What do you think that's going to do; You've been in a lot of systems, this all-out motion, what do you think it's going to do when creating conflict?
A: I think I'd just elaborate on that, creating conflict. I don't think of what it's going to do, I kind of know what it's going to do, you see it out in practice. It forces the defense to think and it puts the advantage in our hands. We've got to execute on pre-snap, post-snap, and knowing what we've got to do because it can be a weapon for us. But, as I said, you can't look too far ahead, just got to keep working to get better day by day.
Q: Is that something that will continue to grow you think; Dabs talked a little about how he has to remember you guys are in year one, he's in year five or six. Is there more to it than you know?
A: I wouldn't be surprised, with Dabs & Kafka. They're very creative, all the offensive coaches are very creative. We've got a lot of weapons and talented guys on both sides of the ball. We've just got to keep coming in, keep learning, and keep getting better every single day.
Q: When we look out there, it seems you're running a lot more routes and not just into the flat, in this offense, how much do you see that more of being something you're going to do and what do you think that can do for your game if you do get that opportunity.
A: What do I see it doing for myself? I just want to be a versatile player and do whatever I can to help the team win. Whatever coach asks me to do, I'm going to go out there and try my best at it. Whatever I need to work on, continue to work on, and just evolve my game. That's something I want to do, become an overall better player, and I think this offense is giving me the opportunity to do that, so, I'm thankful and blessed to have that. So, for me, I've just got to take advantage of it by getting in the facility taking extra meeting time and learning the playbook.
Q:*Saquon when you were coming out of college, I have heard reports that there were times where you'd work with the receivers and work on route running, is that accurate? And, if so, how much time have you put into not just running standard routes, but fade routes?*
A: Yeah, that's accurate, that's an accurate statement in college, but every year in the NFL to be honest. Obviously, I haven't done it in the past here, or this is probably the first-time you guys have ever witnessed me working out with the wide receivers, but that's my offseason training. I do running back drills, a lot of running back drills, so I can expand my game and be more versatile when we do offensive trips or [Daniel Jones] DJ, needs some to throw, if he calls the wide receivers I try to make sure I'm there, and just try to learn because I want to do whatever I can to help this team win and expand my game. So, whatever coach needs me to do or asks me to do, I just go over there and try my best.
Q.*It's been about 10 questions and no one has asked you about your ACL. Do you sit there and ever sit there and look at yourself and say, "am I ever going to be the guy that lit up the league when I was a rookie?"*
A: I can't focus on that. I know what I am capable of doing and I know the talent that I have. The way I kind of think of it is the same mindset I had when I first came into the league when everyone asked me what my expectations are, and this and that. The way I look at life is if I take care of the little things and take it day by day the rest will take care of itself and control what I can control. In the last couple of years, a lot of things have been out of my control, specifically injuries, just some freak accidents. But I know the work that I put in and how hard I train. How I challenge my body and challenge my mind, so I know what I'm capable of doing. For me, I can't look too far into the future, I can't get caught up in, "Oh when I get back this is what I am going to do, or this is what I am going to do." I can't focus on that. I have to focus on getting back in there, getting my acupuncture done, getting to my meetings, watching film, going home and getting some good sleep and letting my body recover, and then worrying about the next day. If I can have that mindset and take care of that, the rest will take care of itself.
Q.*It's your fifth training camp.*
A: Yeah, it's flying by, right?
Q: That's half your career.
A: Yeah, maybe. You never know. Like I said, I can't look too far into it. But I'm 25 now, in year five and one of the older guys in the building. I've been through a lot of ups and downs, but I got to use that to my advantage. I can use that to lead. Especially with some of the adversity that I've had to deal with in the last couple of years. I think that it's not only helped me as an athlete but just as a person, as a man, as a brother, and as a teammate. Just trying to be there and lead the best I can through the stuff I've learned through the previous four years and the stuff I will continue to learn.
Q.*Do you think this team will be in a position to win before your time here is up? Whether that is one, five, seven, or eight years.*
A: I mean that's what you hope right? You hope to come to a spot, whenever that may be and when you are done with that spot make it better than what it was when you came in. I'm really confident in our coaching staff and confident in everyone in the building. Just the system that we have in place. You can't get too caught up in the wins and losses right now. You just have to focus on taking care of every single day. I know I sound like a broken record, or I know I sound like this is what coach Dab's is saying or this is what everyone is saying but, I truly believe that. I truly believe if you just focus on the little things day by day, the rest is going to take care of itself.
Q.*You've mentioned the last couple of years haven't gone how you wanted, and the contract doesn't go on past this year. How big of a season does this make it for you?*
A: The last two years not going how I wanted, I kind of have been reflecting on that. Everything happens for a reason; everything happens for a reason. So, the adversity, the injuries that were put in my way these last two years, God has a bigger plan and it's all going to work out. So, coming up on this year, year five, for me I just want to, as I said in my first interview when I talked to you guys this year, I just want to show the (New York) Giants that they guy that they drafted is still here. I can still go out there and make the plays and help my team be successful. That's the only thing I am focused on. Take care of myself, take care of my body, take care of my mental, and try to be the best teammate I can be.
Q.*Have you accepted that you are going to play in the last year of your contract? Or are you hoping that the work you put in this offseason starts conversations about getting an extension?*
A: That's a great question. Like I said, you can't focus on that stuff. Obviously, that stuff is up in the air. I know that coming into year five, coming into my option year, my thing is just, like I keep saying if I take care of the little things and God blesses me, and nothing crazy happens, the rest will take care of itself. I know where I am at mentally, I know where I'm at physically. I know what I am capable of doing. I just have to focus on taking care of my mind, my mental, and try to be the best teammate that I can be. That's every single day. When the time comes, it is going to pay off.