Saquon Barkley
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Multiple New York Giants players express excitement that star running back Saquon Barkley is ahead of schedule in his injury recovery.

In the midst of the New York Giants‘ Week 3 win over the Tampa Bay Buccanneers, Saquon Barkley exited prior to halftime. He didn’t return and eventually was diagnosed with a high ankle sprain. It was initially believed the star running back would be out for between four and eight weeks. Keyword: “believed.”

People must’ve forgotten this is Saquon Barkley. On Wednesday, Barkley was seen running, jumping, and cutting at practice. This, in a helmet but not additional padding. Reports came out the same day that Barkley was eyeing a Week 6 return to the field, and teammates are expressing their excitement over it.

“That’s just crazy. … I think his body is just made in the lab, I don’t know,” tight end Evan Engram said, per Steve Serby of the New York Post. “I’m glad everything’s coming along recovery-wise, and now it’s just being smart with it and not trying to rush anything.”

“Saquon amazes everybody in everything he does, so are you really surprised that he’s coming back so fast?” rookie linebacker Oshane Ximines said.

It would be great for the Giants if Barkley were to play Week 6…or wouldn’t it? Big Blue’s best outcome would most likely be to not rush him back onto the field. A major, follow-up injury is the last thing you’d want to have happen to the second-year pro.

What’s tough is that Week 6 is a Thursday night game. If he’s not good to go this Sunday against Minnesota, is it realistic for him to be ready just four days later? He’s a freak of nature, there’s no question about that. But patience ultimately needs to be initialized in this whole return process.

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Ryan Honey is a staff writer and host of the Wide Right Podcast.