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New York Giants: Saquon Barkley Will Face A Favorable Schedule In 2019

The New York Giants selected the best player in the 2018 NFL Draft. Running back Saquon Barkley out of Penn State went on to win AP Offensive Rookie of the Year after an outstanding rookie campaign.

Barkley broke records in his rookie season. Saquon got it done on the ground with 1,307 rushing yards and 11 rushing touchdowns. This included an average of 5.0 yards per carry on 261 rushing attempts.

He got it done through the air, too totaling 2,028 scrimmage yards. His 91 receptions were a rookie running back record, and they amounted to 721 receiving yards and 4 receiving touchdowns.

Saquon’s historic rookie season is just the start. The talented playmaker is primed to top his rookie season in 2019, thanks to a favorable schedule.

Best Matchups

Saquon Barkley and the New York Giants will face some of the worst rushing defenses in the league in 2019. In fact, they will face 2018’s bottom two run defending teams in 2019. The Arizona Cardinals were the 32nd (last) ranked team in the league defending against the run, allowing 154.9 rushing yards per game. The Giants will host the Cardinals in week 7.

The Miami Dolphins were the 31st ranked team in the league defending against the run, allowing 145.3 yards per game. Saquon will get to run all over this defense in MetLife Stadium in week 15.

In 2019, the Giants also face three other teams who ranked in the bottom 10 of run defense in 2018. In week 3 the Giants will face the 17th ranked Tampa Bay Buccaneers who allowed 123.9 yards per game.

Just before the bye week, the Giants will face the New York Jets in a MetLife Bowl in week 10. The Jets had the 26th ranked run defense in 2018 with 126.3 yards per game allowed.

A few weeks later, the Giants will host the Green Bay Packers who allowed 119.9 rushing yards per game in 2018, which ranked 22nd in the league. Manning vs. Rodgers might be the headline in week 13, but do not be surprised to see Saquon Barkley steal the show.

Saquon Barkley was a highlight machine in 2018. With plenty of favorable matchups and an improved offensive line in 2019, expect to see more of the same from the young phenom.

Tough Matchups

There are plenty of favorable matchups for Saquon on the Giants’ 2019 schedule, but there are still, of course, a few tough games. The Giants will face four teams who had top 10 run defenses in 2018. Unfortunately, two of those teams are in the division, so the Giants will face those teams twice.

The two division rivals that had top 10 run defenses in 2018 are the Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles.

The Giants will play the Cowboys on the road in week 1, then play them at home in week 9. Dallas had the 5th ranked run defense in 2018, allowing only 94.6 yards per game.

The Eagles had the 7th ranked run defense in 2018. They allowed only 96.9 yards per game, however, Saquon Barkley performed phenomenally against them in both matchups in 2018. In week 6, Saquon had 130 rushing yards against Philadelphia and in week 12 he had 101 rushing yards.

Saquon Barkley will face the 2018’s 10th ranked run defense in week 8 of the 2019 NFL season. The Giants will travel to Detroit to face a solid Lions defense that allowed only 110.1 rushing yards per game in 2018.

The Giants will, unfortunately, have to play the NFL’s best run defending team from 2018 this season. The Chicago Bears ranked 1st in the league allowing only 80.0 yards per game. Good news: Saquon tore that top-ranked defense up in 2018. Barkley ran for 125 yards against Chicago last year, so expect him to feast again next year.

Saquon Barkley seems to play his best football when going against his toughest opponents. Technically, since Saquon is such a talented and game-changing player, every matchup is a good matchup. Regardless, the Giants will definitely expect Barkley to tear it up all season, since he has a multitude of favorable matchups on the schedule.

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