ProFootballTalk names Brian Daboll Coach of the Week
Coach Brian Daboll has been commended by the media for his bold call to go for two at the end of Sunday's game against the Titans.
The praise continued on Wednesday. NBC Sports' ProFootballTalk handed out its five weekly awards, where Daboll was named Coach of the Week.
"The Titans let the Giants hang around, and the Giants and Daboll made them pay with a gutsy two-point conversion that stole a season-opening win," wrote PFT's Mike Florio. "It was the kind of move that gets a team to buy in to a new program, and that lays the foundation for more wins. Also, Daboll didn't freak out or give up when his team trailed by 13."
The head coach's decision hardly came as a surprise to the players, according to a few of the team's captains.
"He's been very clear throughout training camp and throughout the week preparing for this game that he's going to be aggressive in those situations and give us the chance to execute," quarterback Daniel Jones said after the game. "So, I wasn't surprised. I don't think any of us were surprised by that at all."
"He's a man of his word," Barkley added following the win. "He told us he's going to be aggressive. He told us he's going to lean on the players to make plays. In that situation, he did exactly that. When you have a coach like that, it's definitely going to make you go out there and fight for him and execute in those situations."
In addition, ProFootballTalk also named Barkley a finalist for the website's Offensive Player of the Week award, but ended up giving it to Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes.
Barkley did, however, take home the NFC Offensive Player of the Week award from the league for his Week 1 performance.
The 25-year-old running back rushed for 164 yards on 18 carries (9.1 avg.) and a touchdown and added a team-high six receptions for 30 yards. He busted out a 68-yard run that helped set up his 4-yard touchdown burst, and went on to score the game-winning two-point conversion with just more than a minute left in the game. His 164 rushing yards and 194 total yards from scrimmage were both the most in the NFL over the first week of the season.
Saquon Barkley focuses on Panthers, not awards
Saquon Barkley celebrated his third career Player of the Week award in the only manner he deems appropriate.
"Just come into work," Barkley said after practice yesterday. "That's the only thing I can do. I already went back, watched film, wrote my notes, ball security."
That latter point dominated his thoughts more than all the good he did in the Giants' 21-20 season-opening victory against the Tennessee Titans Sunday in Nissan Stadium. Barkley fumbled the ball at the end of a 33-yard run on the Giants' final offensive series. Had the Titans recovered, the Giants' celebration might well have never occurred. But the ball went out-of-bounds, the Giants retained possession and soon took their only lead of the game.
"I got lucky in that situation, that could've gone the wrong way," Barkley said. "That could've hurt us instead of helping us. Got to be better in ball security, got to be better in pass pro. Still missed some opportunities out there, left a lot of yards. So that's my focus, just coming in and seeing what I can do better and when the game comes, execute the plays that I'm able to execute.
"Every game might not be a 194-yard performance, but whatever I can do to help the team win, that's what I want to be able to do."
He certainly accomplished that mission in Nashville. Barkley rushed for 164 yards, his highest total in almost three years and the most ever by a Giants back on opening day. The previous mark was 146 yards by Tiki Barber against St. Louis in 2003.