Giants’ Saquon Barkley ‘not really a fan’ of MetLife Stadium turf

New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard suffered a torn ACL in a Week 3 loss to the Dallas Cowboys, having gone down despite a lack of contact.

Although head coach Brian Daboll insists the injury had nothing to do with the MetLife Stadium turf, it immediately thrust the controversial issue back into the limelight. Former Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. offered a quick take of his own, demanding the NFL go to all grass fields, and many other athletes agreed with him.

But the NFL was once again quick to dismiss the concerns, calling the rate of injuries on grass versus turf “negligible.”

Giants running back Saquon Barkley was once in the camp that dismissed the concerns but now in his fifth NFL season, that opinion has changed.

“Personally, I’m not really a fan of turf,” Barkley told reporters on Thursday. “I’m starting to understand when I was a rookie and older guys were complaining about the turf — I guess you start having a little more understanding of that.”

Although he chose his words carefully, it was clear what Barkley was driving at. It may have been fueled by the emotions over his close friend being lost for the season, but it’s not the first time he or his teammates have questioned the field in East Rutherford.

Opponents of the Giants also frequently complain. The San Francisco 49ers demanded an inspection of the turf in 2020 and in March of this year, Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce called it the worst field in the NFL, “hands down.”

Daboll says the organization will look into the data after the season but with such a drastic cost to replace it, change seems unlikely — especially if the NFL continues to push back against the notion that it causes more injuries.

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Story originally appeared on Giants Wire