New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley reveals he has told himself that under any circumstances he would not use his knee injury as an excuse for his performances this season. In Week 2 of the 2020 season, Barkley suffered a season-ending torn ACL injury.
After being out for a year, Barkley was ready for the start of the 2021 season. Unfortunately for Barkley, he has been far from his form as he has just 134 rushing yards on 39 carries through the first three weeks of the season.
"I don't want to make any excuses. I'm not going to do that throughout this whole season," said Barkley, per ESPN. "I'm never going to make any excuses. The expectation that people have for me, it's not even close to the expectation I have for myself -- and it never will be as long as I play football or whatever I do after football.
That is just my mindset."
Barkley holding himself to a high standard
Barkley had 2,028 rushing yards in 2018 and was named the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. Barkley was hampered by an ankle sprain in 2019 and last year he suffered a season-ending injury in Week 2.
"I hold myself to a high standard. I know this team holds me to a high standard. I know a lot of people hold me to a high standard," Barkley said. "Like I always say, I set my own expectations. Right now I just have to keep working, keep growing, keep improving.
"I know what I'm coming off of. My mom and dad try to make me understand I'm coming off a knee injury. Try to teach me patience in there. I just have to keep being patient with it. I have to keep getting better and keep trusting it, trusting the process and keep working."
Giants offensive coordinator Jason Garrett is happy with the progress Barkley is making. "To me, he's just done a remarkably good job coming back and he's getting better and better the more opportunities he gets," Garrett said.
Barkley insists he has to keep working hard and remain patient. "My touches have been going up. My workload has been going up. Every week I'm getting better," he said. "It's kind of the process coming off a major knee injury.
I can see myself from Week 3 to Week 1, how much better a player I am already. And I've got to keep trusting the process."