Tiki Barber was the little Giants back who went on to do big things. In hind-sight one of the biggest moments for this Giants franchise came recently when Tiki had a prototypical Football "heroic" afternoon of moments against the Redskins in what many consider the game that saved Tom Coughlin's job as Big Blue's Head Coach as it got the G-Men into the playoffs back in 2006; the year before they won the Super Bowl.
While running to Daylight, and gaining for 200 yards a game on the occasional great afternoon, even then there wasn't a microphone Tiki didn't want to disparage someone with, or a camera he didn't want to be seen pointing a finger with.
OK..., Tiki does not like Coughlin and the feeling is mutual. We get that. Tom is backhandedly credited with saving Tiki's career by teaching him how to hold on to the ball correcting Tiki's propensity to fumble. And as I brushed upon, Tiki had a brilliant day against the Redskins in the final game of the 2006 season to get Tom Coughlin and the Giants into the playoffs. Tiki is likewise credited with saving Coach's job.
Here's the rub. Tom Coughlin didn't get fired and won a Super Bowl the next year while Tiki hastened his career in media with an abrupt retirement from Football and denying himself his own Super Bowl ring.
Many times Tiki called out the defense after a game. He called out his coaches after a game. He called out anyone within earshot, without hesitation or remorse it seemed. But no one was targeted by Tiki's slings and arrows more than Tom Coughlin.
Tiki hastened his retirement from the Giants and jumped right into his failing media career with both feet. It's as if he quit Football with the sole purpose of criticizing the Giants. The joke was on Tiki, obviously, proven to him out in the desert of Arizona.
That's enough of that...You're up to date now.
Antonio Pierce and Michael Strahan have spoken out earlier this week about a perceived lack of leadership on part of the Giant players. They both are working for the media now-a-days also. What Pierce, Strahan and Tiki Barber all have in common together is they are all former Giants now working on the Opinions side of Football. What they all do not share together is the satisfaction of owning a Super Bowl ring. However, owning one of those rings is not a Key to the City of sorts. We get that, right?
So when Pierce or Strahan say something, two who have won a Super Bowl playing under Tom Coughlin; and don't forget it was Michael Strahan the conformist who adapted to Coughlin before Coughlin himself adjusted his manner..., when they say something, it's one thing.
When someone who makes no secret about his disdain for his former coach, who feels like he got squeezed out by said coach with the emergence of Brandon Jacobs, someone who feels like he outplayed his coach's acumen, ~ when someone like that, who retired one year too early to win a Super Bowl, and someone who critiqued the Giants incorrectly his whole season as a media rookie...; when someone like that intimates Tom Coughlin is losing his team, finds himself in a very precarious situation and is in danger of losing his job....,
I have a problem with that.
Tiki? ~ most players lift weights to get stronger. Tiki Barber threw people under buses to keep in shape. Now he's trying to save his failed second life (literally and ...literally) by resurrecting his anthem about a bad coach. Nothing has rang less hollow around here since a job guarantee made by George Steinbrenner to a manager in 1984.
It is ironic that Sunday night the Giants will be conducting their Ring of Honor ceremony. Tiki Barber will be one of those honored. As truly as he is one of the greatest offensive Giants ever, he will indeed be booed unmercifully Sunday night not because of his most recent roundhouses he threw at Coughlin, but because he burned every bridge while he was here, as he was leaving and ever since he left.
He did a lot of finger pointing around here. And we just don't like that; not from someone who bailed out one year too early to lift a VINCE with the rest of his team mates. ~ And there-in lies the rub. It was always about Tiki, and then there was everyone else who didn't do their part that day or wasn't as good as him on another day.
So today, we don't really care what you say Tiki and Sunday Night the crowd will let you know very well how much you compromised yourself in the eyes Big Blue Fans.
It's a shame too.