Giants running back Saquon Barkley is rehabbing from a season-ending ACL tear that occurred last September.
Luckily, optimism in regard to his rehab is present.
Per a source close to ESPN’s Jordan Raanan, and one that possesses knowledge of the rehabilitation process, the Big Blue running back is “making good progress.” Barkley underwent surgery this past October.
Raanan additionally writes “no significant setbacks” have occurred, but that Barkley is not slated to fully participate in the early training camp practices — camp will commence Tuesday, July 27 (the NFL will experience a unified training camp start for the first time).
How Barkley performs when he ultimately returns and how consistent he’s able to remain healthy will be crucial for a Giants offense that needs to undergo a notable improvement. The Jason Garrett-led unit finished second-to-last in both total yards and points last year, failing to complement a defense that was strong for much of the 2020 campaign.
The capacity in which Barkley can contribute will also be important for the development of young quarterback Daniel Jones. The soon-to-be third-year signal-caller needs all the assistance he can get in what may be a make-or-break season. Jones has yet to truly prove he’s the long-term answer for one of the larger questions on that side of the ball.
Jones has an improved receiver room in place and the team is also banking on the development of a mostly young offensive line. Possessing a healthy and productive Saquon, however, would be superb for Daniel in the sense that it would take pressure off the 2019 first-round draft pick — Garrett wouldn’t need to overuse Jones and finding success on the ground would help open up the play-action.
Barkley hasn’t been consistently healthy since his 2018 rookie campaign, a season in which he earned a Pro Bowl bid and the AP Offensive Rookie of the Year Award. Returning to that form can’t be achieved unless Saquon first rehabs from this notable injury — it’s relieving to hear he’s on track to do just that.