NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The NFL Draft enters the second round Friday night, but the New York Giants and Jets already consider themselves winners.
“Dream come true to be able to hold that Giants jersey with my last name on it. So it’s a moment I will definitely cherish for the rest of my life,” Barkley said.
As CBS2’s Steve Overmyer reported, being drafted by the Giants No. 2 overall wasn’t even the most significant moment of Barkley’s week.
On Wednesday, his girlfriend gave birth to the couple’s first child — Jada Clare Barkley. He was still wearing a hospital band during the draft.
“The highlight of the week is definitely the baby. I wish she was here right now, I wish I could hold her in my arms. Obviously, she’s not able to fly,” he said. “But being able to have a baby and then being able to get drafted this week is definitely a week I’m going to cherish forever.”
Barkely is from New Jersey and represented Whitehall High School inside his draft jacket. He grew up a diehard Jets fan but now will bleed blue.
“Giants fans can expect a guy who’s passionate about the game, who loves the game of football,” he said.
The Jets pick – 20-year-old quarterback Sam Darnold – will be competing and learning from 38-year-old QB Josh McCown, who shared a text from his 19-year-old daughter teasing him with “he’s less than a year older than me, crazy.”
Darnold grew up in a blue-collar California town, and part of his athletic resume includes surfing. He’s never lived in the cold but has visited his sister who goes to school in Rhode Island.
“I loved it. During the winter, as well, and I loved the cold,” he said.
He’s a QB known for his toughness, which is fitting since his grandfather was the 1970s actor who played the Marlboro Man.
“My grandfather, who sadly passed away when I was two years old — I didn’t get to know him that much, but my mom always tells me how much I remind her of him,” he said.
After the surgeon general released its warning about the dangers of smoking, Darnold’s grandfather quit the role.