Report: Saquon Barkley likely to miss Giants-49ers Thursday Night Football showdown

Jesse Cinquini
3 Min Read
Joe Rondone/The Republic / USA TODAY NETWORK

New York Giants star running back Saquon Barkley suffered an ankle injury late in the team’s 31-28 Week 2 victory over the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.

A recent report indicates that Barkley is likely to miss New York’s game against the undefeated San Francisco 49ers on Thursday.

“That the Giants have not ruled out running back Saquon Barkley (right ankle) for Thursday night was a bit of a surprise, and from what I’m hearing, he likely won’t play,” Jeremy Fowler wrote. “But here’s why the Giants are optimistic about his overall outlook: They were able to determine pretty early Sunday he did not suffer a high-ankle sprain, which an MRI confirmed. And he was walking on the injury after the game that night. By Monday, he had less trouble walking. So while three weeks is a safe bet for his recovery, the Giants are cautiously optimistic that Barkley can make it back sooner rather than later.”

Surprisingly, though, Giants head coach Brian Daboll hasn’t ruled out Barkley for Thursday’s game.

Barkley was selected with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft after a three-season stint playing college football at Pennsylvania State University. He ran for 1,000-plus yards and seven-plus touchdowns in each of his three seasons as a member of the Nittany Lions.

Arguably his best season of college football came during his sophomore season, the 2016 season. Barkley totaled 1,496 rushing yards and 18 rushing touchdowns in 14 games played with the program.

His contributions translated into a whole lot of success for the 2016 iteration of the Nittany Lions. They finished the season with an excellent 11-3 record but lost to the University of Southern California in the Rose Bowl by a final score of 52-49. Barkley ran for 194 yards and two touchdowns in the loss.

The 26-year-old running back has played six seasons in the NFL, all as a member of the Giants franchise. He accumulated 1,312 rushing yards and 10 rushing touchdowns in 16 appearances with the Giants during the 2022 regular season (all starts).

Additionally, his longest rushing attempt a season ago was for a whopping 68 yards.

Those numbers were good enough for Barkley to earn a Pro Bowl nod — the second of his NFL career — as well as finish third in the NFL AP Comeback Player of the Year voting. Only Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith and running back Christian McCaffrey ended up with more votes.

Here’s to hoping that Barkley will be able to play in Thursday night’s game against the 49ers. After all, the Giants will need all the help they can get to beat a San Francisco team that is on a roll to start the season.

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Jesse is an aspiring sports journalist that has previously worked as a staff writer at SB Nation’s CelticsBlog and The Knicks Wall.