EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Saquon Barkley picked up the pace in rehabilitating his sprained right ankle but he gave no hint when he will play for the New York Giants.
Barkley, who sustained a high ankle sprain against Tampa Bay on Sept. 15, worked out with trainers for the second straight day on Thursday and increased his workload.
However, he did not practice with the team for Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings (2-2). It’s an indication he won’t play. Giants coach Pat Shurmur refused to rule out Barkley for Sunday’s game.
Third-year pro Wayne Gallman started in the 24-3 win over Washington on Sunday. He had a career-best 118 all-purpose yards and scored two touchdowns.
While Gallman played well, Barkley is one of the NFL’s most dynamic backs. He was the 2018 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year when ran for 1,307 yards, caught 91 passes and scored 15 touchdowns.
“It felt good,” Barkley said in the locker room after his workout. “I got to open up and run full speed and cut a little bit more. Like I said, just focused on the Vikings and focusing on tomorrow and attacking tomorrow. It’s the last day on the field we technically have to prepare for a very great team and try to find a way to get three in a row. We have a good thing going and we have to continue to keep it going.”
Barkley said any decision on playing would be made by the team and its trainers.
“I’ll just continue to listen to them, have faith in them, and continue to do what I can to help my team win games whenever I’m able to come back,” Barkley said.
Before being hurt late in the first half of the third game, Barkley had 237 yards rushing, seventh in the NFC and 16th overall.
Vikings defensive coordinator George Edwards is getting his team ready to stop whoever plays halfback for the Giants.
“We saw him in the first two games, and then when he unfortunately got hurt,” Edwards said of Barkley. “But we’ve looked at both backs and the way that they’re using them. We have to be prepared for both at the end of the day.”
NOTES: LB Alec Ogletree (hamstring) missed practice again. He did not play last week. ... Gallman (neck), LB Lorenzo Carter (neck) and LB Tae Davis (concussion) were limited. Shurmur said earlier in the week, he expects Gallman and Carter to play Sunday. T Nate Solder (neck) and G Kevin Zeitler (shoulder) practiced fully. Solder was limited Wednesday. Zeitler did not practice.