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Giants’ Saquon Barkley would like to be with team “forever”

Barkley says he is focused on playing now, not future contract negotiations

NFL: New York Giants at Miami Dolphins Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley is nearing the completion of his fourth season with the team, none of which have produced winning football. There is a potential contract negotiation looming. Barkley, though, says he has no desire to be elsewhere.

“I really don’t really think about that at all. Don’t really have enough time to really think about that, but me wanting to be here, I think I made it clear that this is the place that drafted me. I would love to be here forever,” Barkley said. “But I mean, all the other stuff, I really don’t have time to focus on. I just got to focus on getting my body right, getting it ready and trying to go out there and perform at a high level for my team.”

The Giants picked up Barkley’s fifth-year option for 2022. So, unless the Giants were to find an offseason trade partner the No. 2 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft will be a Giant at least through next season.

No concession from Graham

The Eagles average a league-nest 165.6 yards rushing per game. They hung 208 rushing yards on the Giants in Week 12. Defensive coordinator Patrick Graham was asked this week if he just has to accept that the Eagles will pile up a lot of rushing yards on Sunday.

He wasn’t in the mood to make a concession speech.

“You know I’m an old d-line coach, no. It never feels good. It never feels good. The win feels good, all right? When we win, I’m happy for about five minutes and then I think about the next opponent. No, I don’t want to concede that in any way shape or form. Absolutely not,” Graham said. “Now, I want the win more than anything and if they run for 400 yards and we win, I’ll smile probably about for a few minutes then I’ll be upset for the rest of the day. But no, I don’t want to concede that.

“They’ve got good players. We’ve got to do a better job this week. We’ve got to do a better job this week. We’ve got to limit the effectiveness. We’ve got to finish on tackles. We’ve got to get off blocks better. We’ve got to make sure we’re lined up in position better on some of the plays. They’ve got a lot. They’ve got a lot they do. It’s probably simpler for them, but the presentation creates a lot of problems for defenses, so we’ve got a real challenge ahead of us.”

Why the Giants signed Darqueze Dennard

The Giants, still short-handed in the defensive backfield, signed veteran cornerback Darqueze Dennard to their practice squad this week. Head coach Joe Judge was asked what made Dennard attractive to the team.

“What do I like about him? I’m familiar with him from playing in the league early on and actually when he first came into the league, I was coaching special teams against him. He was the gunner, he was a core guy for (Bengals Special Teams Coordinator/Assistant Head Coach) Darrin Simmons in Cincinnati. He’s got good speed, he’s got good physicality, obviously his skillset to matchup on the edge as a corner. He’s got experience in the league<“ Judge said. “It’s a good opportunity for us to bring in a guy with some experience in a need position we have right now.”

Dennard was released from the Indianapolis Colts practice squad earlier this week.


Special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey was asked if he thought placekicker Graham Gano could be considered a Pro Bowl snub.

“Yeah, I mean, anytime you’re almost 90 percent, you’ve always got a chance. You miss four field goals in a year where guys are missing one. This voting thing is a little different, guys mentalities are different. Back in the day, guys that kicked in the freaking dome or in warm weather didn’t get a whole lot of consideration regardless of how many kicks they made,” McGaughey said. “You kick in this stadium, you do what (Ravens Kicker) Justin Tucker’s doing in Baltimore, kicking in that place and having the kind of percentage that he has, it’s a whole lot different kicking in the dome or you’ve got nine games in the dome or eight games in the dome and you’re playing in the AFC South or you’re playing in the NFC West or whatever where it’s warm. That’s a whole different ball game to play in than this, because they’re all freezing – I mean you’ve got a freaking hoodie on with gloves (laughs). You know what I mean?

“To me, it’s just a totally different deal. You’ve got to understand what you’re looking at. Most of the people that (are) voting on it have no idea what they’re looking at.”

Kenny Golladay and separation

There are 124 receivers in the NFL who have been targeted at least 40 times. Among them, Kenny Golladay ranks 123rd in separation created. Wide receivers coach Tyke Tolbert said Thursday that really is not an issue for Golladay.

“He’s never been a guy that’s created a whole lot of separation, but he gets separation because of his body and his catch radius. He’s not going to ever be the guy probably that gets a ton of separation, but he is open because of his catch radius,” Tolbert said. “Sometimes, you have to have the ability just to throw it up to him and let him go make a play, and I think Jake (Fromm) did a good job of that this past game, just throwing it up on that go route and letting him go make a play. That’s probably what he specializes in is making plays and contested catches. All the catches that he’s made this year so far – I say all of them, most of them – are on contested catches.”