The New York Giants do not need Tiki Barber, and that kills him. Anyone who follows football knows that. Since his abrupt retirement from the NFL in 2006 after a falling out with Tom Coughlin and the Giants organization, very few in New York have missed Tiki. Why should they? One season after he left, they became the team that put a stop to the Patriots undefeated season. It was the greatest moment in Giants history and Barber was not a part of it. Still, Tiki feels the need to kick Coughlin and company while they’re down.
After an embarrassing loss to the Saints, New York’s season is on the verge of disarray. They are in danger of missing the playoffs and Barber wanted to be one of the first to highlight what has gone wrong in his latest column on The X Log.
After the Giants put on a particularly poor performance against the Philadelphia Eagles two weekends ago, coach Coughlin came up to the press lectern and said, “We had 29 yards rushing, which is about as pathetic as you can get,” clearly placing the arrow directly at Brandon Jacobs and the Giants’ starting offensive line, as if they either aren’t good enough or weren’t trying hard enough. Now, he may have been right, but for someone who is prone to saying, “we have to keep our sh-t in-house,” it sounded a little outside the corps talking point.
I’m not sure in what way this is considered not keeping an issue in-house. Everyone knew the Giants picked up only 29 yards rushing. That’s a statistic that is available to the public. Classifying that performance as “pathetic” is completely fair. Had he said “the performance from our running back was pathetic,” that’s a different story. There’s nothing wrong with pointing out what went wrong after a brutal loss, and the running game was a big part of that against the Eagles.
Barber then turned his attention to criticizing Coughlin for preaching mental toughness when he was first hired but overseeing a team full of players on IR that “hasn’t exactly rang of mental toughness.” What he said after that was probably the most insulting to the Giants as a team.
Hopes of dynastic Super Bowl runs have morphed into ‘let’s hope we win more than we lose.’ And in the midst of a three game losing streak, after consecutive ugly losses, and potentially on the verge of making it four with the undefeated Green Bay Packers next on the docket, how do we “fairly” evaluate Tom Coughlin?
In other words, the Giants don’t want to win the Super Bowl. Barber is basically saying that as long as Coughlin and his team finish with a record above .500, they’ll feel as though they have accomplished something. Whether Coughlin is the right man for the job still in New York or not, I highly doubt that is the case.
Barber attempted to return to the NFL this past offseason only to discover that not a single team was interested in his services. The Giants are reeling. There’s no question about that. It’s just unfortunate that Tiki has to use a former coach — and a team that pulled off the most improbable Super Bowl victory of all time the season after he left — as his ticket to remaining in the spotlight.Google+