New York Giants Aren't Super Bowl Contenders, Carl Banks Says

With Saquon Barkley and Pat Shurmur, the Giants expect to be a force in the NFC. Slow down, Carl Banks says

The DA Show
March 16, 2019 - 2:30 am

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Video of Two-time Super Bowl champion Carl Banks I D.A. ShowI

The New York Giants went 3-13 last season – their worst finish in franchise history. But after drafting Saquon Barkley and hiring Pat Shurmur, many are ready to anoint the Giants as contenders once more.

Former Giants linebacker and two-time Super Bowl champion Carl Banks, however, is not.

“I always laugh because a team that was 3-13, you get one player, new coaches, and all of a sudden you’re ready for the Super Bowl again. It just doesn’t work that way,” Banks said on The DA Show. “It’s not Monopoly where you can skip ahead and go straight to the championship. It still takes work.”

The Giants drafted Barkley second overall in the NFL Draft. Expectations for the Penn State product have already reached Hall-of-Fame proportions.

“I think the young man has talent,” Banks said. “I think he’s going to have to adjust to the game. I think he’s built for it. His style of play is built for it. If he could have anything close to a rookie year like Todd Gurley or Ezekiel Elliott, then the Giants are on track.”

Gurley averaged 4.8 yards per carry and ran for 1,106 yards and 10 touchdowns as a rookie in 2015. Elliott averaged 5.1 yards per carry and ran for 1,631 yards and 15 touchdowns as a rookie in 2016.

Can Barkley have similar success? Maybe, but he can’t do it alone.

“There are a lot of things that have to be in place for that,” Banks said. “You got to have an offensive line that’s working well for you also. So he’s going to do his part. I’m not putting the stamp of greatness on any player that hasn’t taken the field in the NFL yet. If he takes the field, he may have great plays, but greatness takes a while.”

In other Giants news, Banks weighed in on Odell Beckham Jr., who is being sued for $15 million after his bodyguards allegedly assaulted a man at a party. 

“This one, I don’t think, even hits the radar,” Banks said, referring to Beckham’s long list of off-field troubles. “He’s done just about everything right. It shouldn’t be a milestone because that’s what the expectation is of all professional athletes, but sometimes they don’t always do the right things. But whatever this lawsuit is, it’s not really hitting the radar in terms of things that Odell has done that’s been a distraction. I don’t know all the details. I only know what I’ve read, and it’s been kind of varying stories. . . . But let me just say I don’t think this is something that will be viewed as a big distraction for him or the team.”

The Giants open the season against Jacksonville on Sept. 9. Kickoff is at 1 p.m. ET.