In this edition of the Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast, Matt Harmon and Scott Pianowski discuss Barkley’s monster performance against the Titans, including how he may go down as one of the top fantasy running backs this season.
MATT HARMON: Saquon Barkley looks incredible. His receiving usage, first and foremost-- runs, 23 routes, which led the team; 33.3% target share, that led the team. He was-- there were awesome highlight moments from Saquon Barkley.
He looked like the engine of the team's offense. He looked like their best player. The most impressive play-- which, by the way, the onions on Brian Daboll in his first game to go for 2, go for the win-- and it was a great little designed pass to Saquon Barkley, where he just leveled some dude to get in there.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: He looked fantastic. And I had. like, a soft fade on Barkley. It wasn't that I was dead set against him. I just felt like a lot of people were drafting him proactively, and that wasn't going to be me. And I'm petrified that I could be monstrously wrong on that.
Barkley looked fantastic. He looked like rookie year Barkley in this game. And he needed to be because I know Jones got 9.0 yards per attempt, but I look at who they're throwing to. It's just great that Sterling Shepard's on a football field. He made one long play--
MATT HARMON: Ugh.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: --for a touchdown. That's great to see, but--
MATT HARMON: Yes! [LAUGHS]
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: --I mean, you can't trust Kenny Golladay right now. Wan'Dale Robinson's a rookie who hardly played in this game. They needed-- Barkley, basically, needed to win this game. They won this game on his shoulders. They won this game on the defense making a few plays.
They won this game on the Daboll having the cojones to do what he did. No, and I love it, right? And also, you have a backboard. Even if you don't make that 2-pointer, you could always kick the onside. I know the chances are very slim that you'd get it, but at least you have a little bit of a backboard there.
And then the defense came through with enough of a pseudo-stop. I mean, Tennessee did move the ball. They missed the kick at the end.
But-- and this knocked me out. I was feeling really good about survivor, man. All of those losses at 1 o'clock, I had the Titans. The Giants had no points at halftime. I think I might even have tweeted something about, meet the new Giants, same as the old Giants.
MATT HARMON: [LAUGHS]
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: And then Barkley and Daniel Jones and Brian Daboll stuffed it down my shirt in the second half. So hats off to the Giants. And you know what? Look, if you drafted Barkley, wherever you got him, I'd be feeling pretty good right now because this team, the offensive line looked better.
Barkley looked more explosive. He was active in all parts of the game. He's not gonna come off the field. There's nobody pushing him, right?
I mean, Matt Breida will get a handful of carries. But there aren't many bell cows. This is a bell cow. This is an offensive designer we like.
Jones at least has some athleticism. He can do some things. Eventually, the receiver room will get more healthy. I feel pretty good. Even though I'm not gonna benefit from this at all, Matt, I feel pretty good that Saquon Barkley may go down as one of the key right answers to this fantasy football season.
MATT HARMON: Oh, 100%. Like, the usage totally dictates that. And, yeah, I mean, I love Brian Daboll just knowing, hey, look, I'm not expected to do anything this year, and I'm not expected to win. This is like a discovery season, so let's just go out and try to put this-- 'cause you know the players love it.
And there is a 0.0 chance that Jason Garrett and Joe Judge last year are calling for that 2-point play there. So it excites the fans. It excites the team. So, yeah, the new Giants definitely are not the old Giants, that's for sure.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: You win the locker room over immediately with a game like this.
MATT HARMON: Immediately.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: You know, because he goes-- after the game you used [INAUDIBLE], I knew you guys were gonna get that yard. You guys wanted that game more than the number one seed in the AFC last year wanted that game. Great win for the Giants. You know, Giants on three, or whatever he said.
This is the type of stuff that galvanizes your team. You put the game in their hands. Not like, we're gonna play not to lose. We're going to play friendliest loss. We're gonna play for overtime.
No. We're taking the game right here. I love it.