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#pounditFriday, March 31, 2023

Giants’ defense bails Saquon Barkley out after costly mistake

Saquon Barkley takes off his helmet

Nov 28, 2021; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) during warm ups before the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley made a costly mistake near the end of his team’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, but his defense bailed him out.

Barkley finished with 24 carries for 110 yards in New York’s 23-17 win over the Jaguars. He added another 25 yards on four catches. He had some outstanding runs on the Giants’ final drive, but he made one mistake that could have been costly.

With the Giants leading 20-17 and 1:11 remaining in the game, Barkley took a handoff on 3rd-and-10 and picked up four yards. That set New York up for an easy field goal to go up 23-17, but Saquon failed to stay in bounds when the Jaguars had no timeouts. Instead of giving the ball back to Jacksonville with 25 seconds remaining, Trevor Lawrence and company were left with more than a minute to try to put together a game-winning drive.

They did not, but they came awfully close. Lawrence completed a pass to Christian Kirk over the middle on the final play of the game, and the Giants just barely kept the receiver out of the end zone.

Barkley did not intentionally go out of bounds. It looked like he tried to stop himself and slipped. He also showed just last week that he is very good at playing situational football. But if Kirk picked up that one additional yard, Barkley would have left Jacksonville feeling very badly about himself.


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