Daniel Jones had the best performance of his career last season, and the New York Giants rewarded him with a long-term contract extension.
But star running back Saquon Barkley has yet to come to an agreement with the Giants and has yet to appear at the team’s offseason workouts.
Jones took the practice field Wednesday and threw passes to several receivers, but having Barkley as a weapon brings a different element to the Giants’ offense.
Barkley was named the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2018 and is a two-time Pro Bowl selection. He led the Giants in scrimmage yards and touchdowns last season.
He has also provided some much-needed stability for his 25-year-old quarterback.
Barkley decided not to sign a franchise tag, meaning he will not be penalized if he is a no-show for mandatory minicamp, which begins in June.
But Jones is hopeful Barkley will be on the Giants roster once the 2023 season kicks off.
“Saquon has been a very important part of what we’ve done here, and he’s a tremendous part of this offense,” Jones said. “I hope they can get something done.”
The Giants’ front office added Darren Waller, Parris Campbell and Jalin Hyatt to the roster in an effort to bolster the team’s passing attack.
Barkley was present for throwing sessions organized by his teammates last month in Arizona.
“We had a good turnout — just about everybody made it out there. We spent some time on the field working out and introducing some stuff,” Jones said.
“Saquon has been a great teammate to everybody in the locker room, and I think that says a lot about him as a guy.”
Jones added that the details of the running back’s ongoing contract talks with the team are “between him and the team.”
Brian Daboll, who is entering his second year as the Giants’ head coach, also said the negotiations were between the organization and Barkley.
“There’s always a business side of things in this league, and those conversations will remain private,” Daboll said, “but … everybody goes through it at some point, and you just build on relationships.”