Through 14 weeks this season, nothing could even slow down, let alone stop New York Giants rookie running back Saquon Barkley, who erupted onto the scene and thrust himself into the NFL record books.
In Week 15 however, the Tennessee Titans, aided by heavy rains and gusty winds, were able to swarm Barkley each time he touched the ball and limited him to a season-low 56 yards from scrimmage and 2.2 yards per carry.
It was an all-around ugly performance for the Giants, but particularly for the explosive Barkley, who was named to his first Pro Bowl on Tuesday night. And in Week 16, Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich will aim to repeat that success against the NFL’s future Rookie of the Year Award winner.
But how, exactly, does Reich intend to stop Barkley? Well. . . with a hope and a prayer.
The Colts, of course, very rarely open the roof. In fact, they’ve opened it just once over the previous two seasons, and that came last year in Week 4 against the Houston Texans.
Either way, it’s not just Barkley that Reich is worried about. Contrary to popular belief, he still sees a very dangerous quarterback in Eli Manning when he watches the film and knows not to underestimate nor overlook the two-time Super Bowl MVP.
There will be no rain, no wind and no cold this coming weekend, so in all likelihood, the Giants’ offense we saw in the month after their bye week will likely return. But the real question is whether or not they’ll be able to keep up with the high-powered Colts.