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Giants owner John Mara told Saquon Barkley his decision to choose Eagles made him ‘sick’

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New York Giants owner John Mara couldn’t hold in his emotions after seeing star running back Saquon Barkley choose the Philadelphia Eagles in free agency earlier this month. 

So, he decided to text him his thoughts. 

Mara spoke with reporters at the annual NFL owners meeting in Orlando on Tuesday, and he admitted that he “hated” seeing Barkley go to the Eagles, and he texted him how he felt. 

Mara said he “texted him and told him it made him ‘sick’ shortly after he signed,” according to SNY.

Mara added that he was “hoping” Barkley would be back, while referencing the two contracts the Giants had previously offered him. He also reportedly told GM Joe Schoen that he “wouldn’t be thrilled” with Barkley landing in the NFC East. 

It’s a pill that Mara and the rest of the organization need to just swallow now that Barkley will be seen twice a year for the next three seasons after inking a contract of that length with a max clue of $46.76 million. 

SAQUON BARKLEY’S 5-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER HILARIOUSLY RIPS GIANTS AFTER LEARNING DAD JOINED EAGLES

When news broke that Barkley ended up choosing the Eagles, it was reported that the Giants never offered him a contract this time in free agency. Barkley virtually confirmed that by retweeting the report on X, which said the Chicago Bears and Houston Texans were the other two teams that sent an offer his way along with the Eagles. 

Last offseason, Schoen ended up franchise tagging Barkley, while extending quarterback Daniel Jones for the next four seasons, though Jones’ future with the team is murky heading into the 2024 season. 

Prior to the franchise tag, the Giants reportedly sent an offer Barkley’s way which was worth $13 million per year with $26 million over the first two years, per ProFootballTalk. Barkley reportedly wanted $16 million last offseason. 

Barkley’s Eagles contract has an annual average value of $12.583 million, while he will get $26 million guaranteed. While trading barbs with Tiki Barber on social media after the deal was agreed upon, Barkley noted that he “secured more (guaranteed money) which wasn’t given to me before.”

Barkley admitted that he didn’t handle his goodbye to the Giants organization and its fans properly, issuing an apology once his deal with the Eagles was made official at the start of the new league year. 

“The last three days have been a whirlwind of emotions, but I wanted to take a minute to acknowledge all the Giant fans that have supported me and my family over the last six years,” Barkley said in a statement on X. “When I was drafted here I wanted my impact off the field to rival the accomplishments we had on it, and I can only hope that I came close [to] doing that. I’m forever grateful to the Mara and Tisch family and the wonderful people working in the Giants organization. The fans in New York and New Jersey will forever hold a place in my heart. Ultimately, the NFL is a business, and I hope that everyone can respect my decision.”

SAQUON BARKLEY BARKS BACK AT TIKI BARBER AFTER ‘DEAD TO ME’ COMMENTS FOLLOWING EAGLES DEAL: ‘YOU BEEN A HATER’

Mara was a fan of ex-GM Dave Gettleman selecting Barkley with the No. 2 overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft. He went on to break the franchise’s rookie record for scrimmage yards with 2,028 (1,307 rushing, 721 receiving) with 15 total touchdowns. 

Barkley would total 5,211 yards on the ground and 2,100 through the air with 47 total touchdowns, while earning two Pro Bowl nods for his efforts. It would’ve been more if he hadn’t suffered a major knee injury in Week 2 of the 2020 season against the Bears, which ended his season prematurely. 

Barkley has since returned strong from that injury, but the Giants were never able to find common ground with the star running back. Now, he’s moved on, and for Mara, the Eagles are a team he never wanted to see him play for. The same goes for Giants fans. 

Saquon Barkley and John Mara side by side

Schoen quickly found Barkley’s replacement in free agency, as Devin Singletary signed a team-friend, three-year contract worth $16.5 million.  

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