After his Week 1 performance, New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley has been the subject of criticism over the last few days, especially from a former NFL running back.
The dynamic Barkley was limited to only six yards rushing on 15 carries and made things even worse when his pass blocking skills became a topic of discussion. Tiki Barber’s criticism made waves this week when he brought up his lack of blocking skills.
Barkley said he was going to use Barber’s doubts as a “challenge,” before later adding he truly doesn’t care about other people’s opinions. “Obviously, Tiki is a legend. Done a lot of great things for this franchise,” Barkley said. “So I’m not going to look at it as disrespect. I’m going to look at it as a challenge.”
“Saquon Barkley might not be an every-down back,” Barber said on the “Tiki and Tierney Show” on CBS Sports Radio. “He cannot pass-protect. It’s becoming glaring … and it’s going to be a liability. … Recognition is one and two, you gotta go hit a dude. Saquon Barkley is a big man who doesn’t want to hit anybody. It’s frustrating to watch. He’s a great back, but he’s frustrating to watch trying to pass-protect.”
So, did Barber’s comments bother Barkley?
“No. It does not, to be completely honest,” Barkley said. “The reason it doesn’t bother me is — no disrespect to anyone on this call or anyone outside this when I say I don’t care — I truly don’t care about other people’s opinions.
“I know, you can ask my teammates, you can ask anyone in this building, they won’t question my toughness. It’s easy to be an all-pro clicker and to watch stuff on film and say, ‘Oh, he should have done this, he should have done that.’ Or ‘You can improve on that.’ That is the easy way. But in my position, I know how I come to work every single day and I know the belief my teammates have in me, so that is why every single week I’m going to come out and just try to improve and get better, not for you guys on the outside but for the guys in this building.”
Barkley will look to rebound as the Giants take on the Chicago Bears next.