Will Saquon actually miss games?
The New York Giants will be prohibited from signing running back Saquon Barkley to a new contract until after the 2023 season starting at 4pm on July 17th.
Barkley is currently scheduled to play the 2023 season under the franchise tag as the Giants opted not to offer him a long-term extension.
In June, Barkley expressed his disappointment about being tagged, stating that he was upset not about the tag itself, but about the misleading and untrue stories that were leaked.
This contract impasse comes at a time when the Giants recently extended quarterback Daniel Jones with a $160 million deal.
Jones, who was initially seen as a disappointment, helped lead the team to the playoffs last season.
Barkley was drafted by the Giants in 2018 with high expectations of becoming a generational talent at the running back position.
However, injuries have hampered much of his career. He managed to stay healthy in 2022 and recorded a career-high 1312 rushing yards. Now, his future in the league is uncertain due to the contract situation. If the deadline passes without a longer deal being reached, the 26-year-old Barkley will face a significant decision. He can either play under the franchise tag or hold out in hopes of securing a more lucrative contract.
According to ESPN reporter Dianna Russini, the latter option seems probable as Barkley has made it clear that he finds the franchise tag undesirable.
There is a serious question about his availability for Week 1 against the Dallas Cowboys if he does not receive a long-term deal from the Giants.
Saquon Barkley has made it clear the franchise tag is undesirable. I’m told his availability for Week 1 against the Dallas Cowboys will be in serious question if he does not get a long-term deal from the Giants.
— Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN) July 12, 2023
In recent years, there have been notable holdouts in the NFL.
Deshaun Watson, for instance, refused to play for the Texans due to disputes with the team’s management. However, his situation was complicated by his involvement in a sexual misconduct scandal in 2022.
Another example is Le’Veon Bell’s contract-motivated holdout in 2018. Bell left the Steelers after the 2018 season, but his career took a downward spiral, bouncing between four teams before ultimately leaving the league before the age of 30.
While there are similarities, it is challenging to draw direct comparisons between Barkley and Bell due to the different circumstances and notoriety surrounding their situations.