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Transcript: Running Back Saquon Barkley

Eric from BBI : Admin : 9/9/2022 4:51 pm
Running Back Saquon Barkley

Q: How do you feel about the season? You spent this whole summer basically gearing up, making sure you stayed in shape.

A: Yeah, I put in a lot of hard work this offseason. Not only myself, but everyone here on this team from spring to camp and now it's finally here. You only get 17 guaranteed opportunities, so you've got to try to take advantage of every single one. We had a great week of practice, so we've just got to go out there, execute and come up with a dub.

Q: You obviously don't play against (Titans Running Back) Derrick Henry but is there some motivation when you're going against one of the best to have one of your better games?

A: Yeah, like you said – I don't technically go against Derrick Henry. At the end of the day, we are both playing two completely (different) defenses. He's definitely one of the guys when you're on the sideline, you're going to look up at that scoreboard to see what he's able to do because of how special of a player he is. He's been very dominant for a very long time in this league, especially last year how he was able to lead the league in rushing for five weeks after he hurt his foot – that's pretty impressive. I've talked to him multiple times. When I've been injured, he's reached out, got in contact with me and gave me some words of encouragement. I'm excited to see him go out there and hopefully he has a great year but this game right here, he's not the Derrick Henry that we know. We just have to go out there, execute in all three phases of the ball and come out with a win.

Q: I don't know if you saw, (Ravens Quarterback) Lamar Jackson set a deadline today for his contract to get done and it didn't get done. Do you have a thought on negotiating in season? (New York Yankees Outfielder) Aaron Judge said to the Yankees that he is not negotiating in season. You're off to a fast start, if the Giants came to you to negotiate would you, or are you a, 'Let's talk after the season guy'?

A: That's a great question. I really can't answer that question until it comes. Right now, probably the way I would handle it is just focus on what I can focus on and let my agent take care of all that. My agent Kim (Miale), I feel like I've got one of the best agents, if not the best agent, in the business so I know if I do what I've got to do on the football field and God keeps me healthy, she's going to take care of the rest.

Q: Is there any bit of you that's looking forward to not having to answer the hypotheticals of what you want to show, what you hope to show and what people are saying? You're playing games now where you can put the performance right on the field.

A: Yeah, I'm excited to go out there. Not only myself, all of us put a lot of hard work in this offseason from spring to camp to now. My mindset is to just go out there Week 1 and be Saquon Barkley. Whatever the team, and whatever (Head Coach Brian Daboll) Coach Dabs and (Offensive Coordinator Mike Kafka) Coach Kaf need me to do, to go out there and execute – whether it's catching the ball, running, pass pro – whatever they need me to do. My biggest thing I want for this week, not only for myself but for the team too, is just continue to fall in love with the process, don't get too overconcerned with the results. No matter if we win by 40 or we lose by 40 there is going to be some sort of over reaction to this week. Whether I go for 200 yards or say I go for 10 yards. There's going to be over reaction. I'm just going to continue to have that mindset of staying in the moment, taking it day by day and getting better.

Q: What's realistic for you? You say there is going to be an overreaction. You're coming off two years where you've been injured, and you haven't been able to put up the numbers. What is realistic for you?

A: I feel like whatever God presents for me that day. Every game is a different opportunity, a different challenge. There are some games where it's meant for you to go off and there are some games where it's not. For me, my focus is whatever I can do to help the team win. That's what is realistic for me. Go out there and on the plays that need to be made for me, make those plays and wherever it is like I said – blocking, catching, running in between the tackles or outside the tackles, leadership on the sideline. Whatever I can do. Those are the things that I can focus on. Those are the things that are within my control, that's what's realistic for me, is going out there and controlling what I can control. What I mean by overreaction, I'm not just saying you guys, but you win the first game, it doesn't guarantee you're going to win the Super Bowl and if you lose the first game it doesn't guarantee you are going to lose the Super Bowl. Fall in love with the process, come to work every single day. We had a great week of practice and we've just got to continue to build off that.

Q: I mentioned Judge, you guys are two of the biggest stars in New York. Do you know Judge and how much respect, athlete to athlete, for a guy who bet on himself and is having an all-world caliber year? That's got to be the dream for an athlete.

A: I wouldn't say we are best friends, but I've met him a couple of times. The last time I had seen him, I think I was at Carbone eating dinner. He's having a heck of a year and like you said, any time an athlete goes out there and bets on himself and goes out there and performs at a high level – you love to see that. Whether it's football, whether it's baseball, whether it's basketball – I want all athletes to go out there and get what they deserve.

Q: You've been a little more outspoken this offseason for some of the naysayers or those who have doubted you. Are you able to turn that off when the games start or do you still use that every single time the ball is in your hands?

A: No, it's not like I'm going to be back there like, 'Ah man, Jordan said this about me.' That's not my mindset.

Q: Only on Wednesdays?

A: (Laughs) Yeah, right – exactly. For me, when you're training in the offseason you hear the noise. Now it's coming in and just blocking out the noise. You can't get too caught up with what people are saying about you – the positive and the negative things. Just going out there, my main focus is getting back to me – controlling what I can control and when the plays are out there to be made, go out there and make plays.

Q: How about getting away from you? The team overall, there are not a lot of expectations for the Giants. Does that motivate you guys or bother you guys at all?

A: It is what it is. We know what we have in the locker room. We know what we have within this team, within these coaches and within the facility from everybody. We know what we have. Our focus is to go out there and execute. We only get 17 guaranteed opportunities and we have one right now coming up. We've got to go out there and try to make the best of it.

Q: You have a lot of the same guys though and you had the 31st-ranked offense last year. Why should people think that this offense can be significantly better? In your mind, what is it that you guys hold on to and say we are going to be significantly better?

A: I think for us it would be, one, it would be from how we are executing in practice. I feel like the plays are being made in practice, not just now but from spring to camp and obviously within this week. Another thing I would say, a lot of us are all healthy again and obviously, Week 1 everyone comes into it pretty healthy. We have our core guys back together and we all can play at a high level with the new guys that we added. It's just a mindset thing. The standards, the culture. I think Dabs came in and did a really good job of having a mindset and what we want to be as a team. I think the players did a really good job of responding out on the practice field, out in the weight room, out in the meeting rooms, of trying to live up to that standard, trying to build that culture – build a winning culture again here in New York. When you're buying in and you're doing all the right things, I feel like the only thing it really does is give you an opportunity to give you a chance. It gives you a way better chance if not. That's where I feel confident in our team and our offense this year. Like I said, it's Week 1, it's going to be the first time we really play a real game that counts. When we make the plays, be happy about it. When we make our mistakes, learn from it, and just make sure it doesn't carry over into next week.
SFGFNCGiantsFan : 9/9/2022 6:51 pm : link
Glad he has stopped the 'When I dominate this fall, I hope the critics STFU' type quotes he was giving this spring.

Here's to hoping he looks like rookie Saquon starting Sunday.
LOL - I initially thought they were talking about Joe Judge  
PatersonPlank : 9/9/2022 9:19 pm : link
I'm scarred for life by anyone named Judge
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