NFL Rumors: Giants not shopping Saquon Barkley despite 1-5 start
The New York Giants finished last season in the second round of the playoffs. Now, Brian Daboll's team is 1-5 with no semblance of competitive DNA. Daniel Jones has quickly regressed, as has the entire offense, and there's no path back to contention in the rough-and-tumble NFC East. It's time for New York fans to panic.
That said, the Giants aren't prepared for a fire sale. While that could change with another loss before the Oct. 31 trade deadline, New York appears content to keep all its core pieces together. ESPN's Jeremy Fowler appeared on SportsCenter and made it clear (h/t Bleacher Report).
"I was told that the New York Giants are not shopping any players as of right now. If they did lose to the Commanders this week, fall to 1-6, could that change leading up to that October 31st deadline? Potentially. Now, there are a lot of teams that would make a run at Barkley. They consider him one of the very best running backs in the league, but he's got $10-plus million in prorated salary that they would have to work that out, the Giants may have to cover some of that, but right now, nothing is going on there."
To further reinforce the matter, Barkley told reporters he has no desire to get traded.
"Sitting here, everyone knows how I feel. Everyone knows I don't want to get traded. I don't think anyone in their right mind would want to get traded anywhere. It's not an easy thing to do. You have to move. I have a family. I would love to be here. But like I said, it's not in my control. My focus is to be the leader I can be for this team and get this thing on the right track."
Barkley obviously leaves the door open, citing the unavoidable business dynamics at play. For the Giants, it's a tough decision. Barkley has served as the foundation of the team's offense since his arrival in 2018. In many ways, he is the face of Giants football.
New York engaged in a long and blustering contract negotiation over the summer, which ended with Barkley accepting a one-year contract worth slightly more than the franchise tag. That leaves his future in doubt, but clearly, Barkley would like to stay with the Giants, so long as the Giants would have him.
The contract is a big hurdle for New York, as Fowler notes. Even if a team trades for Barkley, the Giants might have to foot part of the bill. It's telling that Barkley, very much in the conversation for the best player at his position, may not get traded unless the Giants help relieve financial pressure from a $10 million contract that can expire at season's end.
For now, don't count on Barkley getting traded. The market for RBs has dried up significantly since the Dalvin Cook and Ezekiel Elliott mania of the summer, and there's simply no desire from teams to pay top-end backs. Even if it's Saquon freakin' Barkley.