New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley previously revealed he was yelling at a fan during this past Sunday’s 31-16 loss at the Miami Dolphins over comments he heard related to the neck injury quarterback Daniel Jones suffered during the game.
Barkley spoke with reporters on Thursday about the incident that went viral.
“It’s expected that they want a team that goes out there and wins,” Barkley explained, according to Bob Brookover of NJ Advance Media for NJ.com. “When it’s booing or cheering … I’m OK with that. I don’t let that get under my skin. But that moment, especially when D.J. is someone who will give his freaking all for this franchise and this city … and he’s sitting in a blue tent getting his neck checked and you got a fan just (cursing) at him, that doesn’t sit well with me.”
Giants players have routinely and repeatedly defended Jones amid the offense’s struggles this season and before his latest setback that could keep him sidelined for at least the upcoming “Sunday Night Football” matchup involving the 1-4 Giants and 3-2 Bills at Buffalo’s Highmark Stadium. Jones missed practice on Wednesday and Thursday and presumably hasn’t yet been cleared for contact.
After Giants right tackle Evan Neal called fans who booed the team during a home defeat “bandwagoners” and people who “flip hot dogs and hamburgers” last week, Barkley publicly urged everyone in the locker room to not “pick a battle with the fans” because “they’ve been here before us and they’re going to be here after us.” The 26-year-old again defended paying customers on Thursday but also asked that they show some compassion in certain situations.
“If the fans don’t like the product we’re putting out there, we have to give them a product to be happy about,” Barkley acknowledged. “So go ahead and boo. But have sympathy, too. He’s a human being and out of all people, it shouldn’t be (Jones).”
Meanwhile, Barkley missed the last three games because of an ankle injury and couldn’t confirm his status for Sunday night. As of Thursday afternoon, OddsChecker listed the Giants as 14.5-point underdogs for a contest that could turn into a laugher if both Jones and Barkley are spectators.