Saquon Barkley and Sterling Shepard figure to be two of the key offensive pieces for the Giants for the foreseeable future. And each has a connection to one of the quarterbacks who could become a teammate later this week.
For Barkley, his relationship with Dwayne Haskins goes back to their days as high school all-stars. They played together in a Rivals game in Maryland.
“Me and Dwayne go way back,” Barkley said this past week at the Giants’ offseason conditioning program. “He was actually the Rivals Quarterback MVP and I was the Rivals Running Back MVP. He was the guy that was throwing to me at that Maryland camp. He is young and talented. He has a great career ahead of him, and wherever he ends up, I wish him the best.”
Shepard hasn’t caught any passes from Kyler Murray, but they both are products of Oklahoma, where the quarterback won the Heisman Trophy last season. Murray transferred to Oklahoma from Texas A&M just as Shepard was heading for the Giants.
“I left right when Kyler Murray was coming in, but he’s a great guy from every time that I’ve met him,” Shepard said. “He’s been successful at every single level, and I don’t see anything holding him back at this level. I think he’ll do a great job.”
Those relationships will count only if the quarterback lands with the Giants. It’s unlikely anyone in the Giants’ front office is going to ask the current players to vouch for a draft pick, but it is nice to know that if they take one of them, they’ll already have a connection with an important teammate.
Of course, Barkley hasn’t always been a fan of Haskins. He watched the quarterback lead Ohio State to a thrilling 27-26 victory over Penn State, Barkley’s alma mater, last September.
“It was a heartbreaking loss at home for us,” Barkley said, sighing.
Perhaps just another topic for the two to discuss if they become teammates.