Saquon Barkley talks Giants' confidence level following win over Vikings: 'We believe in each other'

Jan 15, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) looks on during warmups before a wild card game against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium.
Jan 15, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) looks on during warmups before a wild card game against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium. / Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Saquon Barkley played a pivotal role in the Giants’ 31-24 Wild Card win over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, racking up 109 total yards and scoring twice in the impressive, all-around team victory.

His 28-yard scamper in the first quarter tied the game after the Vikings scored easily on their first drive, and his powerful two-yard burst into the end zone put the Giants up for good with under eight minutes to play.

It was an outstanding win for the Giants, beating a Vikings team that was previously 11-0 in one-score games this season and securing the Giants’ first playoff win since the 2011 season.

According to Barkley, the Giants knew they had a win like this in them because of how much they believe in the people inside their building.

“We have confidence because we know what type of men and women we have in our facility and in our locker room. We believe in each other. We’re a confident group, we’ve shown that throughout the whole season. If you look at this whole first week of the playoffs, that’s the type of team you’ve got to be, because every game is going to be close. You’ve got to lean on each other, you’ve got to trust each other, and keep making plays in critical situations.

“That’s why we’re a confident group, because we’ve been in these games all year,” he later added. “Only difference with this game is if you don’t win, you go home, so the stakes are a little higher, but we’ve found ways to win games. We’ve been preparing for these moments all year.”

Interestingly enough, Barkley carried the ball just nine times on Sunday, totaling 53 yards. And while he ran effectively, to the tune of 5.9 yards per carry, Barkley knew that the game plan called for high-volume passing plays against a Vikings defense that was susceptible to the pass.

“Whatever I’ve got to do to help the team win,” Barkley said. “If it’s carry the ball 50 times, if it’s block, if it’s run the ball this many times, that’s what I’m willing to do. We felt like we could throw the ball on this team. We ran the ball well too, to be honest, but we got the job done. Put points on the board, gave us a chance to win, and the defense closed it out for us.”

While Barkley’s effort was tremendous on Sunday, so too was the play of Daniel Jones, who had perhaps his best game as a pro. Jones posted a 114.1 passer rating with 301 passing yards, two touchdowns and 78 more yards on the ground.

Barkley was quick to praise his teammate after the big win.

“We expect a lot out of each other and we’ve got each other’s backs, and he’s been making a lot of plays for us this year. He came up big today,” Barkley said of Jones.

“I know we have an elite quarterback. I think he’s shown that multiple times, but we’ve also got amazing players around him too. So, we’ve got his back, no matter what.”