After a stellar rookie season, New York Giants‘ running back Saquon Barkley suffered a number of injuries which led to less-than-stellar performances in the years following his NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year campaign.
However, all of that changed in 2022 as Barkley ran for 1,312 rushing yards to go along with 57 receptions, 10 touchdowns. As a result of his success, Barkley was named to the Pro Bowl and the Giants made the playoffs.
They now have high expectations heading into 2023. The only problem is the star running back is a free agent this offseason, along with QB Daniel Jones.
Where does that leave Barkley and the Giants?
Make no mistake about it, New York has some tough decisions to make if they want continued success and that starts with figuring out what to do with the star running back.
As always, the odds tell a story. FOX Bet analyst Daniel Montanari has provided us with a few hypothetical lines on where Barkley can end up in 2023, so let’s dive in.
ODDS ON SAQUON BARKLEY’S NEXT TEAM*
Giants: -220 (bet $10 to win $14.55)
Bills: +350 (bet $10 to win $45)
Bears: +400 (bet $10 to win $50)
Broncos: +500 (bet $10 to win $60)
Panthers: +650 (bet $10 to win $75)
Jets: +650 (bet $10 to win $75)
Chiefs: +700 (bet $10 to win $80)
Ravens: +800 (bet $10 to win $90)
Cowboys: +1000 (bet $10 to win $110)
Seahawks: +1100 (bet $10 to win $120)
Saints: +1300 (bet $10 to win $140)
Rams: +1500 (bet $10 to win $160)
Bengals: +1500 (bet $10 to win $160)
*Odds as of 2/28/2023
At -220 the Giants are the overwhelming favorite to retain Barkley’s services. Although Saquon has indicated he would prefer not to get the franchise tag, New York certainly has that option at its disposal and likely wouldn’t hesitate to use it should the two sides fail to reach an agreement.
“We believe that the Giants will look to get a new deal done with Daniel Jones in the coming days to then use the franchise tag on Saquon Barkley,” Montanari said.
The Buffalo Bills (+350) are the second hypothetical favorite, and anyone who has watched Buffalo this season knows why. The Bills offense is disproportionately weighted towards quarterback Josh Allen’s ability to throw and run the ball. The running game, outside of Allen, is virtually nonexistent and adding a player of Barkley’s caliber would provide the offense with the balance it needs to make the leap next postseason.
The Chicago Bears (+400) are also a strong contender for Barkley’s services as they have more cap space than any team in the NFL. On top of that, they are likely to lose running back David Montgomery to free agency. Similarly to the Bills, the Bears’ offense can use more balance, and Saquon could provide QB Justin Fields with a level of comfort he has yet to see in the NFL. If the opportunity presents itself, expect the Bears to pounce.
Surprisingly, the Jets (+650) are also strong players for the dynamic running back. While the offense is loaded for New York’s other team, RB Breece Hall is recovering from a torn ACL and adding Barkley would certainly alleviate any concerns Gang Green might have towards that end. Additionally, Barkley is familiar with the area and would not have to move.
Stay tuned to FOX Sports for the latest updates on how Barkley’s NFL future unfolds.
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