EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley cleared yet another hurdle when he came through his first contact at practice late last week with no issues, multiple sources told ESPN.
If all goes well in Wednesday’s padded practice, Barkley is expected to be on the field Sunday in Week 1 vs. the Denver Broncos. His workload would still be limited as the Giants continue with the long-range approach on their star running back. ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported that Barkley was trending in the right direction to play against the Broncos last week, with only a late setback or the Giants potentially holding him back.
Barkley tore the ACL in his right knee last October. But the Giants have been extra-cautious with their top offensive weapon this spring and summer. Barkley did not appear in a preseason game and didn’t get into live drills until less than two weeks ago in a red no-contact jersey in New England.
His first taste of contact came in a padded practice Thursday at the Quest Diagnostics Training Center.
“Felt good at practice and practicing with everyone on the team,” Barkley said afterwards. “Think that was definitely needed. Just grateful to be out there and just getting ready for the season.”
It’s mostly all encouraging news for the Giants and their offense with Barkley, wide receivers Kenny Golladay (hamstring) and Kadarius Toney (hamstring) and tight end Kyle Rudolph (foot) all tending in the right direction for Week 1.
Only tight end Evan Engram (calf) is in serious doubt.
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