Saquon Barkley: 'I Think' My Peers Would Pick Me over Baker Mayfield for OROY

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJanuary 30, 2019

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) celebrates his 78-yard touchdown during the first half of an NFL football game against the Washington Redskins, Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018, in Landover, Md. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Patrick Semansky/Associated Press

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley believes NFL players and coaches would choose him as the 2018 Offensive Rookie of the Year.

Appearing on ESPN's Get Up on Wednesday, Barkley said the following about his Rookie of the Year candidacy: "If you asked my peers that played against me or coaches that had to play against me, 'Who is Rookie of the Year?' I think they would say me."

Barkley is likely part of a two-horse race for Offensive Rookie of the Year honors along with Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield.

A panel of 50 Associated Press members will make the final call, and the winner will be announced during Saturday's NFL Honors awards show.

New York passed on selecting a franchise quarterback with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 NFL draft in favor of taking Barkley out of Penn State.

That decision paid immediate dividends, as Barkley was among the NFL's top running backs as a rookie. The 21-year-old was named to the Pro Bowl after rushing for 1,307 yards and 11 touchdowns while catching 91 passes for 721 yards and four scores.

His 2,028 total yards from scrimmage led the NFL this season. 

Team success eluded the Giants, though, as they finished just 5-11 on the year. The team owns the sixth pick in this year's draft.

After winning the 2017 Heisman Trophy, Mayfield went No. 1 overall to the Browns, and he lived up to the hype as well.

In 14 games (13 starts), Mayfield completed 63.8 percent of his passes for 3,725 yards, 27 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. He also went 6-7 as a starter, and the Browns went 7-8-1 overall after winning one game in the previous two seasons combined.

Both Barkley and Mayfield have strong cases, but Barkley may have a slight advantage since a running back has been named Offensive Rookie of the Year in three of the past five seasons.

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