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Ramses Barden: 'It's Been Awhile'

It's hard not to be noticed when you're 6-foot-6, but Ramses Barden somehow perfected the art of disappearing in his three nondescript seasons in the NFL.

Until Friday night, that is. The New York Giants' third-round pick in the 2009 draft had three catches for 46 yards in Big Blue's 20-17 loss to the Chicago Bears at MetLife Stadium. The highlight was an 11-yard touchdown grab, his first professional score and first since November 29, 2008, his final game for Cal Poly when he caught six passes for 108 yards and two TDs against Weber State.

"It's been a while since I was in the end zone," Barden said. "There was a time when I was used to it. Hopefully, it's the foundation for some more."

If Barden can cure the injury bug that's dogged him throughout his pro career, the prospects of him emerging as yet another weapon for Eli Manning are tantalizing. Barden's 15 catches in 17 career games made this preseason do or die for the big target. Friday's performance may have saved his spot on the Opening Night roster.

"They're all important, but for me, absolutely, because I've been here for a few years, and this is the healthiest I've been in a while," Barden said. "And I want to show that good feeling isn't going to waste. I want to be here for whatever this team needs me to do, offense, green zone. The more touchdowns I can get, the happier I'll be."

It was one game, but Barden left the field unscathed and his teammates impressed.

"He's a guy that can come in and help this team out and do a number of different things for us. I'm happy for him and glad he could step up and play well for us," Manning said.

Follow Jon Lane on Twitter: @JonLaneNYC