NFL Betting News

Saquon Barkley Not a Guarantee to Be Back for Week 1

Peter Dewey
Jun 9, 2021, 3:00 PM EDT
Saquon Barkley may not be ready for Week 1.
Saquon Barkley may not be ready for Week 1. / Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The New York Giants aren’t going to take any chances with star running back Saquon Barkley’s recovery. 

Barkley, who played in just two games last season before tearing his ACL, doesn't have an exact timetable for his return, which could leave his Week 1 status in doubt. 

“We are going to make sure that we take Saquon’s rehab at the correct rate for his individual body and injury,” Giants head coach Joe Judge said. “We have to make sure that we let him get it at his pace and when we put him on the field he can play 100% aggressive and confident and he’s going to play safe and he can play effective.”

Last season, Barkley ran for just 34 yards on 19 carries, but the Giants will need him to be a lot more effective in 2021 if they want a chance at winning the NFC East. 

WynnBET currently has the Giants with the third-best odds to win the division at +300. New York nearly made the playoffs in 2020 since the NFC East was so bad, and Vegas thinks they will improve slightly with an exact win projection of eight games (+300) in 2021. 

The Giants added wide receiver Kenny Golladay to help improve their offense, and Barkley’s return will certainly go a long way as well. 

“He comes in every day, he attacks every day from a rehab standpoint,” Judge said of Barkley. “He’s had a phenomenal attitude and great motivation, he’s been tremendously positive . . . Couldn’t be happier with how he is working, showing tremendous leadership this offseason. He’s champing at the bit to get back on the field. We are taking it day-by-day and he’s getting better every day.”

New York finished last season with the second-worst offense in the NFL, averaging only 299.6 yards per game. If they want a chance at ending their four-year playoff drought, New York will need Barkley healthy for a good chunk of the season, even if it means he misses Week 1.