The Giants running game finally appears to be gaining some ground.
After two preseason games of disappointing showings filled with negative rushes, the running backs are looking to build off some positive performances from Saturday’s preseason game against the Jets as they hope to break out in time for the Cowboys in Week 1.
“It’s only a matter of time,” said Paul Perkins, who rushed for 33 yards on six carries. “We’re just making steps in the right direction, continuing to progress and I think we’ll be in our stride for the regular season.”
Perkins and the running backs will get one more crack to show they are indeed making progress before the start of the season with one final preseason game against the Patriots on Thursday.
It’s no secret that the running game has been a major weakness for Big Blue over the past few seasons and up until Saturday it appeared as if the Giants were in store for more of the same.
Instead, they received some encouraging individual performances.
Perkins led the team averaging five yards per carry while rookie Wayne Gallman had a team-high 43 rushing yards on 12 carries. Orleans Darkwa showed some effectiveness on the goal line, punching through for a 1-yard touchdown run.
Yet one decent preseason game against the Jets doesn’t necessarily mean the problems are solved. In fact, the team still averaged just three yards per carry, rushing for 90 yards on 30 attempts.
But Perkins points out that it’s just about making progress at this point.
“That’s the biggest thing for us,” he said. “Coach’s mantra is 1% better, so I think we’re following that mantra.”
The Giants certainly hope so.
The team has not had a 1,000-yard rusher since Ahmad Bradshaw in 2010 and many are hoping Perkins is the man who can bring the Giants running game back to life.
The second-year running back out of UCLA definitely sounds up for the challenge.
“We have high expectations for ourselves,” he said. “We want to be the best, so just continue to progress and learn from our mistakes.”
With the season-opener against the Cowboys less than two weeks away, some Giants have acknowledged they’ve begun to prepare for Week 1 already but Perkins isn’t ready to look too far ahead.
“Honestly, I’m not even thinking about Dallas right now,” he said. “It’s more focused on New England and week-by-week for me.”