Barkley received the franchise tag, which will keep him in New York for 2023 and buys the Giants time to continue to work on a long-term deal with the running back who enjoyed a resurgent season in 2022 and gave the club reason to believe he can stand alongside Jones as a key part of the team’s future.
“In a situation like this you’re trying to do what’s best for you and your family while also balancing being part of a team, understanding the goals and the vision that we have as a team and as an organization,” Jones said of the negotiation process and how it pertained to Barkley’s future. “That was certainly important to me throughout the deal and I think we found a way to do both those things and do it the right way for both sides. Saquon — he means a ton to me as a teammate and as a friend and means a ton to us as a player. I won’t talk about his business, but that was a piece of it, too.”
The Giants are keeping two young players coming off career years, and after enduring a cap-strapped 2022 season (which included the release of cornerback James Bradberry, solely out of financial necessity), Schoen has New York in a better position. With a decent amount of cap space to work with, Schoen has room to breathe while attempting to improve the roster. Such a process should include a close look at receiver (such as a potential release of Kenny Golladay) and parts of the defense (both in adding new pieces and extending Dexter Lawrence), and could include a longer deal for Barkley than the one year guaranteed by the tag.
“Yeah, I’m going to talk to Saquon today. I talked to him yesterday before, you know, we put the franchise tag on him,” Schoen said. “So, again, we’ve had deals out, whether it’s the bye week or recently and we’re going to continue to negotiate. We love Saquon. He’s a good teammate. He’s a captain. He’s a helluva player, so right now, he’s under the franchise tag and you know, as we build the team and continue with our offseason plan, we’ll do what’s best for the team and we’re still mapping that out.”
The work has only just begun for Schoen. Fortunately, he’s shored up his most important position.