The New York Giants may have had a rough couple of years, but the last person they can blame is Saquon Barkley. The elusive running back has dazzled during his short time in the NFL so far and only looks to improve going forward.
One interesting fact about the former Penn State rusher? He hasn’t spent one dime from his $31 million NFL contract. Let’s take a closer look at how this incredible athlete is apparently also a savvy investor as well.
Saquon Barkley’s production so far
You can argue that from a positional standpoint, the Giants were fools to not draft a quarterback when they did. And you may be right. But you can’t deny that Barkley has been phenomenal.
From that perspective, the Giants made a great pick. He may not have been the player the Giants needed, but to be blunt, they needed more than one player anyway.
Pro Football Reference reports that in his rookie year, Barkley rushed for 1,307 yards and 11 touchdowns on his way to his first Pro Bowl appearance. He also had 91 catches for 711 yards. That gave him over 2,000 yards from scrimmage during his debut campaign. He immediately brought to mind great running backs from the past.
Last season, Barkley missed three games due to injury, so his numbers took a hit. He rushed for 1,007 yards and six touchdowns with 52 receptions for 438 yards. He missed out on the Pro Bowl, but you have to think he’d have made it if he played a full season.
The New York Giants drafted Saquon Barkley with the number two overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, directly after the Cleveland Browns selected Baker Mayfield. The Giants drew some criticism at the time for passing on quarterbacks like Sam Darnold, but the thinking from the organization was that Barkley was too talented to pass up.
According to Spotrac, Barkley is currently in the midst of a four-year, $31 million deal. Based on his production, that’s a bargain. This season, Barkley stands to make $750,000 in base salary that extends to $3.4 million when bonuses are factored in.
As of now, Barkley is eligible for unrestricted free agency in 2023. Running backs tend to have a short shelf life in the NFL, and Barkley’s already had plenty of injury issues as he’s played behind the Giants less than mediocre offensive line.
Still, the Giants will definitely look to lock up Barkley to at least one long-term extension. His talent and ability — when he’s on the field and protected — is too great to deny.
It’s clear that Barkley has outperformed his rookie contract. But the way he manages his money, it may not matter.
How Saquon Barkley approaches his finances
A Business Insider piece on Barkley stated that the running back isn’t touching his football salary. He’s investing all of that $31 million and only spending the money he receives from endorsements.
When asked for his inspiration, he cited former Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch as his guide:
“Once I realized when I declared for the NFL draft and kind of realized where I was going to be drafted, that was something I was like, You know what? Kind of want to follow the Marshawn Lynch method. I don’t want to touch that…I want to invest it, put it in the right people’s hands and learn as I continue to make investments. And just live off the endorsement deals.”
Barkley’s sponsors include both Pepsi and Nike, so he no doubt has plenty of money rolling in there. In preparing for his future now, Barkley is showing wisdom beyond his years.