1. Don’t abandon the run game early
Without Barkley last week, the Giants running options were Matt Brieda and Gary Brightwell. Neither were exactly an opposing force against the 49ers defense. While Brieda did score a touchdown in the game, he was also limited to just four carries for 17 yards. Brightwell had just four rushes for five yards.
The Giants didn’t even attempt to try rookie running back Eric Gray in the game to see if he could create a jolt in the running game that works well for the Giants. Whether Saquon is back for the Giants or not on Monday night remains to be seen and his presence will make an impact on the running game 100 percent.
If Barkley is forced to miss a second straight game due to the ankle injury, the Giants can't get away from the running game so quickly. Whether it’s using Gray more over Brightwell or calling plays for Jones to use his legs and run, they've got to focus on the ground game. The Giants have been better at run blocking than they have pass blocking so far in 2023.
Even during the Week 1 loss to the Cowboys, both Jones and Barkley ran the ball well early on before the game got out of hand. And the Giants also got away from the running game early on because they tried to play catch up and Jones paid for it with seven sacks. Against Seattle, the rushing attack must be a focus.