Saquon Barkley said he will use the bye to find himself.
The self who won Offensive Rookie of the Year a season ago and was among the league’s leading (and most exciting) running backs, not the one who was held to one rushing yard in 13 carries against the Jets in his last outing.
“Have that mindset that, no matter what happened in the first half of the season or what happened last week, that I’m the best player on the field and when I touch the ball I make things happen,” he said on Tuesday. “I’m going to get back to that.”
Sunday’s performance — and his recent outings since returning from a high ankle sprain three games before it — seemed to create subtle cracks in Barkley’s confidence. He said recent conversations with his family, and his father in particular, brought him back to the mindset of a dominant player.
Even the always positive Barkley needs a pep talk from pops.
“After a tough loss and a disappointing performance from me with only one yard, obviously mentally, physically, you start, not questioning yourself,” he said, searching for the proper word for his subtle self-doubt yet never finding it. “But I was able to have a good sit-down talk with my father, and my family, and they gave me a lot of great advice to get myself back into it.”
And be himself again. The Barkley the Giants drafted second overall in 2018. The Barkley the Giants will need going forward.
“The time we do get off, I’ll spend time with my family, spend time with my teammates,” Barkley said. “And then when I come back, get back to being who I am.”
Notes & quotes: The Giants signed TE Scott Simonson, who was with them in the preseason, to add depth at the position with Rhett Ellison in the concussion protocol and Evan Engram dealing with a foot sprain . . . The Giants also shuffled their practice squad roster, adding TE Garrett Dickerson, WR Alex Bachman and LS Colin Holba. Pat Shurmur said the addition of Holba was not a reflection on Zak DeOssie, whose snap derailed an extra point in Sunday’s loss, but rather a move to have players in the building who might be signed to reserve/future contracts at the end of this season. WR Reggie White and DE Freedom Akinmoladun were terminated from the practice squad.