The New York Giants‘ medical team has reportedly cleared the team’s star running back, Saquon Barkley, to return to the football field for their season opener against the Denver Broncos, Sunday. Barkley has spent the last year recovering from a torn ACL suffered in Week 2 of the regular season in 2020.

“I wouldn’t go out there if I didn’t feel confident that I could protect myself and be helpful for the team,” Barkley said Friday, according to ESPN.

 Sarah Stier / Getty Images
Sarah Stier / Getty Images

Practicing with the team with full contact this week and last week helped him earn the medical clearance. Barkley also passed a series of requisite tests.

“Yeah, I mean, practice and the game [are] totally different, but I’ve been having a really good week of practice just getting back out there trusting the knee, getting my football conditioning back in the flow of things, getting a feel for the run game, for the pass game, for pass-pickup and all that,” Barkley said.

Despite being officially ready to go, Barkley will likely be eased into the starting role and split time with Devontae Booker. The Giants will start the season by playing two games within 10 days, as they take on the Washington Football Team, next Thursday.