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Devontae Booker was thrust into lead back role with Saquon Barkley injury. How did he do? (plus Week 5 Utah ties roundup)

New York Giants running back Devontae Booker stretches to reach the end zone for a touchdown.
New York Giants running back Devontae Booker (28) stretches to reach the end zone for a touchdown as Dallas Cowboys safety Damontae Kazee, top, defends in the second half of an NFL football game in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, Oct. 10, 2021.
Michael Ainsworth, Associated Press

Devontae Booker is on his third NFL team in three years, having moved around after falling out of the running backs rotation with the team — the Denver Broncos — that originally drafted him.

Following one season with the Las Vegas Raiders, the former University of Utah star is now with the New York Giants, where he’s serving as the primary backup to Saquon Barkley.

On Sunday, though, Booker was thrust into the lead back role after Barkley went out with an injury during the Giants’ 44-20 loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

There’s no official update yet on how long Barkley, who suffered a left ankle injury during the first quarter Sunday, will be out. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that Barkley is estimated to be out 2-4 weeks, with an outside possibility of returning in two weeks, and he’ll undergo further testing Monday to determine the severity of the injury.

Until Barkley is back, it looks like it will be the Booker show. He’s likely to start just his second game since his rookie season in 2016 when New York hosts the Los Angeles Rams in Week 6.

“I can only control what I can control,” Booker told reporters postgame, per the team’s website. “The stuff that happened today with Saquon, I am just getting ready and prepared every week as if I am the starter or whatever. It sucks to see him go down, now I just got to be ready.”

Tasked with taking over as the team’s lead back Sunday, Booker played 60 offensive snaps (88% of the Giants’ total) and had a solid day, finishing with 16 carries for 42 yards and three receptions for 16 yards. He also accounted for two touchdowns — one rushing, one receiving — in his first multiscore game since a Week 9 win over Denver last season.

Booker’s first touchdown came when he leapt over the pile on the goal line for a 1-yard score to tie the game at 10-10 late in the first half. He ran for 18 yards on the 88-yard scoring drive, including a 14-yard carry near midfield.

On his second touchdown of the day, a 3-yard reception on a fourth-and-goal in the fourth quarter, Booker slipped after making the catch but fought through the tackle attempt of Dallas’ Damontae Kazee and stretched the ball over the goal line for the score.

“I think overall, from the eyeball test, he did some solid things out there for us,” Giants head coach Joe Judge told reporters about Booker’s play. “Obviously, finishing right there in the end zone at the end, he did some tough running right there. I saw him step up on some blitz pickups. Pick up the safety off the edge a couple of times, did a nice job right there. Obviously, I’ve got to watch the tape and see exactly what he did.”

It was a particularly unfortunate day for the Giants offensively, who also saw starting quarterback Daniel Jones (concussion) and lead wide receiver Kenny Golladay (knee) go down with injuries.

“It is next man up mentality and we all have to go out there and perform, and fight our butt off,” Booker said.


How Utah ties performed during Week 5

Several Utah ties made a significant impact during Week 5 of the NFL season. Here’s a look at how local ties performed:

Rams 26, Seahawks 17

Los Angeles

  • Terrell Burgess, S, Utah: 19 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Matt Gay, K, Utah and Orem High: Made field goals of 31 and 47 yards, made 2 of 3 point-after attempts; 11 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Jonah Williams, DE, Weber State: 1 tackle; 11 snaps (6 on defense, 5 on special teams).

Seattle

  • Cody Barton, LB, Utah and Brighton High: 18 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Marquise Blair, S, Utah: 2 tackles (1 solo), 1 tackle for loss, 1 pass deflection on a third-down play; 25 snaps (18 on defense, 7 on special teams).
  • Bryan Mone, DT, Highland High: 2 tackles (1 solo); 26 snaps (all on defense).
  • Bobby Wagner, MLB, Utah State: Started at linebacker; 4 tackles (1 solo); 73 snaps (67 on defense, 6 on special teams).

Falcons 27, Jets 20

Atlanta

  • No locals on roster.

New York

  • Javelin Guidry, CB, Utah: 26 snaps (24 on defense, 2 on special teams).
  • Zach Wilson, QB, BYU and Corner Canyon High: Started at quarterback; completed 19 of 32 passes for 192 yards, 1 interception, 1 carry, 3 yards; sacked 2 times; threw for a 2-point conversion in the fourth quarter; 56 snaps (all on offense).

Eagles 21, Panthers 18

Philadelphia

  • No locals on active roster.

Carolina

  • Brady Christensen, OT, BYU and Bountiful High: Started at right tackle; 76 snaps (71 on offense, 5 on special teams).

Packers 25, Bengals 22

Green Bay

  • Jordan Love, QB, Utah State: Did not play.

Cincinnati

  • Jalen Davis, CB, Utah State: 4 snaps (all on special teams).

Patriots 25, Texans 22

New England

  • Harvey Langi, LB, BYU, Utah and Bingham High: 13 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Kyle Van Noy, LB, BYU: 3 tackles (2 solo); 43 snaps (all on defense).

Houston

  • No locals on roster.

Titans 37, Jaguars 19

Tennessee

  • No locals on roster.

Jacksonville

  • Nevin Lawson, CB, Utah State: 32 snaps (21 on defense, 11 on special teams).
  • Jay Tufele, DT, Bingham High: 13 snaps (all on defense).

Vikings 19, Lions 17

Minnesota

  • Nick Vigil, LB, Utah State and Fremont High: 6 tackles (3 solo); 32 snaps (25 on defense, 7 on special teams).

Detroit

  • John Penisini, DL, Utah, Snow College and West Jordan High: 1 tackle; 21 snaps (16 on defense, 5 on special teams).
  • Penei Sewell, OT, Desert Hills High: Started at left tackle; 68 snaps (all on offense).
  • Jamaal Williams, RB, BYU: Started at running back; team-high 13 carries, 57 yards, 2 receptions, 8 yards; 22 snaps (all on offense).

Steelers 27, Broncos 19

Pittsburgh

  • Miles Killebrew, S, Southern Utah: 18 snaps (1 on defense, 17 on special teams).

Denver

  • Garett Bolles, OT, Utah, Snow College and Westlake High: Started at left tackle; 63 snaps (60 on offense, 3 on special teams).
  • Tim Patrick, WR, Utah: Started at wide receiver; 7 receptions, 89 yards; caught a 5-yard pass to convert a fourth down on a touchdown drive; 57 snaps (all on offense).

Buccaneers 45, Dolphins 17

Tampa Bay

  • No locals on active roster.

Miami

  • Eric Rowe, S, Utah: 2 solo tackles; 22 snaps (all on defense).

Saints 33, Football Team 22

New Orleans

  • Kaden Elliss, LB, Judge Memorial High: 30 snaps (6 on defense, 24 on special teams).
  • Taysom Hill, QB, BYU: 1 reception, 11 yards, 1 tackle; left game in second quarter with concussion; 9 snaps (all on offense).
  • Marcus Williams, FS, Utah: Started at safety; 3 solo tackles, 1 pass deflection on a third-down play; 82 snaps (all on defense).

Washington

  • Tyler Larsen, C, Utah State and Jordan High: 4 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Dax Milne, WR, BYU and Bingham High: 1 reception, 6 yards; 35 snaps (34 on offense, 1 on special teams).
  • Jared Norris, LB, Utah: 1 solo tackle; 20 snaps (all on special teams).

Chargers 47, Browns 42

Los Angeles

  • Michael Davis, CB, BYU: Started at cornerback; 3 solo tackles; 71 snaps (all on defense).
  • Kyler Fackrell, LB, Utah State: 2 tackles (1 solo); 41 snaps (33 on defense, 8 on special teams).
  • Alohi Gilman, S, Orem High: 1 solo tackle; 54 snaps (27 on defense, 27 on special teams).

Cleveland

  • Sione Takitaki, LB, BYU: 5 tackles (2 solo), 1 QB hurry; 38 snaps (17 on defense, 21 on special teams).

Bears 20, Raiders 9

Chicago

  • Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah: Started at cornerback; 2 tackles (1 solo); 66 snaps (all on defense).
  • Patrick Scales, LS, Utah State and Weber High: 9 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Khyiris Tonga, DT, BYU and Granger High: 6 snaps (5 on defense, 1 on special teams).

Las Vegas

  • Jackson Barton, OT, Utah and Brighton High: Not active for game.
  • Andre James, C, Herriman High: Started at center; 67 snaps (all on offense).
  • Dallin Leavitt, S, Utah State and BYU: 2 tackles (1 solo); 21 snaps (all on special teams).

Cardinals 17, 49ers 10

Arizona

  • Kylie Fitts, OLB, Utah: 13 snaps (all on special teams).
  • Leki Fotu, DT, Utah and Herriman High: 2 pass deflections; 29 snaps (23 on defense, 6 on special teams).

San Francisco

  • Fred Warner, LB, BYU: Started at linebacker; team-high 9 tackles (7 solo); 62 snaps (61 on defense, 1 on special teams).
  • Mitch Wishnowsky, P, Utah: 2 punts with 48.5-yard average; 1 inside 20; 4 snaps (all on special teams).

Cowboys 44, Giants 20

Dallas

  • Bradlee Anae, DE, Utah: 1 solo tackle; 18 snaps (17 on defense, 1 on special teams).
  • Simi Fehoko, WR, Brighton High: Not active for game.
  • Dalton Schultz, TE, Bingham High: Started at tight end; team-high 6 receptions, 79 yards; 30-yard reception on a third-and-6 helped lead to a touchdown; 66 snaps (57 on defense, 9 on special teams).

New York

  • Devontae Booker, RB, Utah: team-high 16 carries, 42 yards, 3 receptions, 16 yards, 2 touchdowns (1 rushing, 1 receiving); scored on a 1-yard run in the second quarter and 3-yard pass in the fourth; 69 snaps (60 on offense, 9 on special teams).

Bills 38, Chiefs 20

Buffalo

  • Taron Johnson, CB, Weber State: Started at cornerback; team-high 12 tackles (8 solo), 1 pass deflection; 85 snaps (all on defense).
  • Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah, Snow College and Bingham High: Started at defensive tackle; 54 snaps (50 on defense, 4 on special teams).
  • Zack Moss, RB, Utah: 11 carries, 37 yards, 3 receptions, 55 yards; 42 snaps (all on offense).

Kansas City

  • Marcus Kemp, WR, Layton High: 1 solo tackle; 29 snaps (4 on offense, 25 on special teams).
  • Daniel Sorensen, S, BYU: Started at safety; 4 tackles (3 solo); 62 snaps (57 on defense, 5 on special teams).

Ravens 31, Colts 25

Baltimore

  • Tyler Huntley, QB, Utah: Did not play.
  • Ty’Son Williams, RB, BYU: 4 carries, 6 yards, 2 receptions, 15 yards; 14 snaps (all on offense).

Indianapolis

  • Julian Blackmon, FS, Utah and Layton High: Started at safety; 6 tackles (4 solo), 1 forced fumble inside the Indianapolis 5 that led to a turnover; 76 snaps (70 on defense, 6 on special teams).