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Saquon Barkley: I’m back and better, motivated to shut everyone up

The third week of the 2022 NFL preseason is here, so Mike Florio and Chris Simms share what they'll be keeping their eyes on all weekend.

Giants running back Saquon Barkley has missed 21 games in the last three seasons, and even when he has played he hasn’t been particularly effective. But he insists that he’s still the player he was in his impressive rookie season.

In fact, Barkley thinks he’s even better than he was as a rookie -- and he’s eager to prove that to people who doubt him.

“Do I feel like I’m back? I feel like I’m better,” Barkley told The 2ndWind Podcast, via the New York Daily News. “To be completely honest. I’m older now. I’m 25. I’ve been through some stuff, ups and downs. And now I’m in a situation where – you know me, I always have a mindset of always being counted out – but now it’s actually here. It’s actually real. People are really counting me out. People are trying to write me off. And I don’t really do it for the pleasure of others or making other people satisfied. I do it because I just want to be great. But now I have that extra motivation, the extra motivation to push me to go out there and kinda just be like you know what, shut everyone up.

Barkley made no secret that the people who think he no longer has it make him mad.

“Now it’s kill mindset. Now it’s like, ya know what, f--k everybody. I’m ready to go crazy, and I’m gonna let the world feel me,” Barkley said.

The reality, however, is that talk is meaningless: Barkley needs to be healthier and play better than he has, or else all those critics who motivate him so much will be proven right.