For a minute, it looked like Saquon Barkley's future with the New York Giants was at serious risk of coming to an end. Both sides were unable to agree to terms on a long-term extension before the July 17 deadline, which begrudgingly cornered Barkley into playing the 2023 season on the franchise tag. While there was the thought that Barkley would not show up for the start of training camp, they did agree to a revised one-year deal at the eleventh hour with incentives that could push his total pay to $11 million for this season.
That merely puts a bandage on this situation, however, and Barkley's long-term future with the team still is very much up in the air. That said, he hasn't wavered in his preference of being with New York for his entire career.
"Oh, yeah. I don't think that really changed," Barkley said Sunday when asked if he still wanted to be a Giant for life. "They know how I feel. I'm not really too focused on that right now.''
This was Barkley's first time speaking publicly since July 27 because he "felt the questions would continue to be about the tag or the money situation."
"It's in the past," he said. "I can't control that. I know I came out and tweeted, 'It is what it is,' and that's what I truly felt at the moment.''
The running back's contract situation is now essentially on hiatus as Barkley reiterated that his focus now is simply to play.
"Once I made the decision I was going to show up and I was going to be there and do my job, you got to put all that aside,'' Barkley said. "Got to be mature about it.''
He added: "We made a decision; you got to put it to the side; you got a job to take care of. I'm here, and I'm ready for the season."
Again, this situation is still far from over as this one-year agreement should simply be looked at as both sides kicking the can down the road. They'll once again need to step to the negotiating table if New York wants to ensure that Barkley remains with the franchise for the rest of his days. For Barkley, he'll have another year in Brian Daboll's offense to post the level of production that is worthy of being one of the rare high-priced backs in today's NFL.