New York Giants co-owner John Mara has recently expressed his desire to see their star running back Saquon Barkley wear a Giants uniform for as long as the running back plays in the league.
The Giants have been negotiating with Barkley since last year, however, the two sides couldn’t come to an agreement leading to the Giants giving Barkley a non-exclusive franchise tag on March 7. The same day the team reached a four-year, $160 million deal with quarterback Daniel Jones, allowing them to retain Barkley’s rights for 2023 via the tag worth $10.091M.
If Saquon plays under the tag, he will earn $10.1 million this year and then hit free agency again next year, albeit he expected a longer contract at a higher salary. The running back market is only getting softer this season as all the top three running backs- Saquon Barkley, Tony Pollard, and Josh Jacobs were hit with the same amount of franchise tag.
The Giants RB finished the 2022 regular season fourth in the entire league with 1,312 rushing yards, 10 rushing touchdowns, and 57 catches for 338 yards.
What did the Giants’ co-owner and manager tell about the future of Saquon Barkley with the team?
According to Dan Graziano of ESPN, the Giants’ GM John Mara opened up to the reporters on Monday about the future of their veteran RB Saquon Barkley, saying they already clarified to Saquon that they want him to stay with Big Blue for his entire career.
“I told Saquon we want him to be a Giant for his entire career. He provides leadership, he’s a great player and we’d like to be able to get something done with him at some point. The running back market is what it is right now, but I’m still hopeful at some point we will come to an agreement”, Mara stated.
Giants’ John Mara says he last spoke with Saquon Barkley about 10 days and that it was a good conversation
“We want him to be a Giant for his entire career” pic.twitter.com/uSRWIkrxBU
— Charlotte Carroll (@charlottecrrll) March 27, 2023
The Giants co-owner also drew the examples of Eli Manning, Michael Strahan, and Tiki Barker, who were all Giants for life stating he wants Barkley too on the list, albeit he is leaving the negotiation to the team’s GM.
However, the Giants GM Joe Schoen seems indifferent to sacrificing cap space on the RB position devaluing in the modern NFL as he disclosed pulling an offer to the RB, essentially resetting negotiations.
“There’s no outstanding offer right now. Once we put the franchise tag on him, we stepped back. We knew that throughout the negotiation that if there was a time that we can’t come to an agreement, we’re going to go to the franchise tag. And that’s what we did”, Schoen stated.
The Giants GM mentioned the team is comfortable with Barkley playing the whole year on the tag if both sides fail to reach any conclusion, albeit the co-owner wants the ace RB to stay in Big Apple.
Fans will undoubtedly be eagerly watching to see how negotiations progress and what the future holds for the Giants promising running back.