Giants’ Saquon Barkley to miss 2-3 weeks with ankle sprain

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Saquon Barkley Giants
Arizona Cardinals safety Andre Chachere, right tackles New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley has a sprained right ankle and is expected to miss two-to-three weeks, beginning with Thursday night’s matchup against the San Francisco 49ers.

Head coach Brian Daboll will speak again on Tuesday in Tempe, Arizona, where the Giants are preparing for Thursday’s game in Santa Clara, CA.

Quarterback Daniel Jones said it will take a big effort to replace Barkley if he can’t play.

“Obviously, we’ll miss him with what we are doing,” Jones said Monday in Tempe. “So guys will have to step up. It won’t be any one guy. It will be everyone elevating their play and stepping up. I am confident we can do that.”

Barkley, who is playing on a one-year contract worth up to $11 million, was injured with 1:08 to play against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. The 26-year-old had to be helped to the bench. Two plays before he got hurt, Barkley had a 16-yard run to get the Giants into position for the go-ahead field goal.

Two plays after the injury, Graham Gano converted a 34-yard kick that gave the Giants a 31-28 victory.

Barkley played 66 of the Giants’ 68 offensive snaps. The No. 2 pick in the 2018 draft and the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year ran for 67 yards and a touchdown and caught six passes for 29 yards and another TD. If he cannot play, either Matt Breida, Gary Brightwell or rookie Eric Gray will start.

“He’s extremely dependable,” Jones said of Breida. “He’s an explosive runner. He has breakaway speed. He always does the right thing. You can count on him to step up and play well.”

Barkley was bothered by ankle injuries in his second season and missed three games. He suffered a torn ACL early in the 2020 season.

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