Tiki Passes the Torch: Despite being one of the elite running backs in the NFL and showing no signs of declining, Tiki Barber is prepared to walk away after this season to pursue "off-field opportunities"
posted by YukonGold to football at 12:17 PM - 49 comments
I'd hate to see that. I like Barber and he is one of the top backs in my opinion. On the other hand Brandon Jacobs is an aquantance of mine and I would love to see him get more touches.
posted by scottypup at 12:52 PM on October 18
I concur, scottypup. I love to watch him run the ball. But he has the right idea. Go out on top, while your body is still healthy (even thought he says it takes him longer to recover), and no, he doesn't need a Super Bowl win to define his career, although it would be icing on the cake.
posted by steelergirl at 01:49 PM on October 18
Being a Dallas Cowboys Fan for 41 years I have DNA that prevents me from liking Giants, Redskins and Eagles...but I have always liked Tiki. He's caused me a lot of pain over his carreer. If he does step away it can be compared to the retirement of Barry Sanders. I always thought Barry would come back until he never did...so I guess I think that Tiki won't go after this season. Perhaps the Giants can offer additional incentives to keep him through 2008, but my DNA causes me to want to see him doing book tours next fall and not running the ball.
posted by Termite at 01:59 PM on October 18
I'm with you Termite, except for the part about liking the Cowboys. If Tiki retires, I'll be happy, not because a Hall of Fame player is walking away from the game while he can still walk, and not because he's got tons of options and he'll move into a new career with relative ease, and not because he seems like a genuinely likable guy with a workable life-plan and his head on straight, but because with him off the Giants, I can finally hate them unconditionally, which makes my local-market football allegiances a lot less ambiguous.
posted by chicobangs at 02:26 PM on October 18
I'm with you Termite, especially the part about liking the Cowboys. Tiki does seem to be a real class act and it's nice to see him finally getting a little bit of the respect he is due as one of the elite backs in the NFL. Hopefully, he will be in Canton one day.
posted by ampto11 at 03:37 PM on October 18
I have seen Tiki Barber often (and Ronde once) on the "Fox and Friends" morning news program. It is quite evident that both he and his brother took full advantage of the opportunities the University of Virginia offered them. They are eloquent, witty, and well-informed people who appear equipped to excel at anything they might do. I'm no Giants fan, but watching Tiki run is a treat.
posted by Howard_T at 03:55 PM on October 18
posted by SunnySide at 04:48 PM on October 18
Class act. The league could certainly use more T.B.'s and less T.O.'s.
posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 06:07 PM on October 18
If Tiki retires, I'll be happy, not because a Hall of Fame player is walking away from the game while he can still walk... I caught a few minutes of Cold Pizza this afternoon. Both Woody Paige—who was once on the Hall of Fame selection committee—and Skip Bayless (who annoys me for some reason that I can't explain) said they do not think Tiki Barber is a Hall of Fame running back. They sited his lack of years playing and lack of Super Bowls, and suggested he consider sticking around a few more years to see if Eli can help get him Super Bowl ring. Obviously only their opinions, but Woody's previous experience on the committee holds some weight. I think Tiki is awesome for reasons other than his numbers, and hope that he will continue to play for a few more years.
posted by scully at 06:15 PM on October 18
aubviously most people love tiki as do i, and it would be cool to see him stay next year as a player but if not he would probably make a pretty good analyst
posted by bronxbomber at 06:21 PM on October 18
Speaking of TO (and I really do hate to), Woody and Skip also both agreed that despite his 100+ career TDs, TO is not a Hall of Famer either. Woody said that even though the committee says that off-the-field things shouldn't influence who gets in, that he believes that TO's antics will hurt his chances. And said that Michael Irvin isn't in for some of the same reasons, and Irvin was more of a leader on the field (and multiple Super Bowl winner).
posted by scully at 06:23 PM on October 18
Skip Bayless (who annoys me for some reason that I can't explain) You don't need to explain them. It's Skip Bayless. We all understand.
posted by yerfatma at 07:12 PM on October 18
Im glad I got rid of Tiki Barber from my spofi fantasy team- (; ) Baseball Prospectus) Anyway, Im a big Giants fan, and ill be sad to see Tiki go. On the other hand, Jacobs is a beast running the ball, and is young. Tiki is starting to show signs of aging, but is still a great runnung back. I think he would be for years to come if he decided to stay in the NFL. Im glad to see that he knows when to leave at the right time, not too early and certainly not too late. At any rate, his mind could change by next year, especially if the Giants come close to winning a Superbowl.
posted by Kendall at 07:44 PM on October 18
I don't think Tiki's leaving is a bad thing. I cite Johnny U, Jordan, Jerry Rice, and Seau (wait: is he retired now?) as examples of top dudes who sort of tarnished their legacies. Of course, it's their legacies and not for me to judge, but it just SEEMS better to go out at the height of your abilities. I now officially retire from posting stupid s**t on this site. And now I officially unretire, so HAH!
posted by THX-1138 at 07:47 PM on October 18
It's kind of weird seeing this news--Tiki and Ronde were in my graduating class at UVa, so I've been cheering them on for longer than most people. Like some others here, he was a reason for me to root for the Giants, especially since when he started they had Charles Way at FB for an all-Virginia backfield. But it's still odd that someone my age is "retiring". At least Ronde's got a ring.
posted by LionIndex at 07:57 PM on October 18
My dad, who has hated the Giants longer than most people here have been alive, met Tiki at a wedding some years back and had nothing but the highest praise for him. I'm no Giants fan, either, but have always liked him as a player and a person. It's good to know that the real-life person matches the public persona. Get out while you can, Tiki. There are much better things ahead for you...
posted by ajaffe at 09:20 AM on October 19
I caught a few minutes of Cold Pizza this afternoon. Ouch, sorry dude. Looking at Tiki's numbers, I doubt he makes the Hall. He's really good and seems like a nice guy but I don't think he can make the Hall with those numbers. He'll approach 10,000 yards rushing and 5,000 receiving but only 50 TDs to go along with 40 fumbles.
posted by tron7 at 11:31 AM on October 19
Tiki is starting to show signs of aging..... So is that why he ran for over 180 yards last week against the Falcons? I am a big time Cowboys fan but watching Tiki Barber run the ball is a sight to see. Dude reminds me of Emmitt Smith because he rarely takes a big hit. He knows what it takes in order to keep that engine running and goes out of bounds before taking a lickin'...just like Emmitt used to do. I was watching ESPN last night before the Mets game and they had a segment on Earl Cambell. Mr. Cambell was a great running back and a Hall of Famer even though he only played for 9 years. To see the way that his body has basically given up on him is truly a sad. He goes on to say that he should've gone out of bounds a lot more instead of trying to run thru defenders. If Tiki decides that the time has come for him to move on, so be it. I wish him nothing but the best and hope that it's a decision that he makes when the time is right. Tiki does not need a Super Bowl ring to clarify him as one of the best, just take a look at Barry Sanders. #20 did not win a Super Bowl but is considered to be one of the greatest backs to ever play the game and I have to agree with that estimation.
posted by BornIcon at 12:06 PM on October 19
Keep in mind bornicon, that Tiki has had a few great games on the year thus far, but he dosen't have one rushing touchdowns yet. He isnt as fast as he compared to last year, and between the tackles Tiki rarely gets more than 3 or 4 yards. Tiki has come out with statements saying how much longer he has to prepare for each game to keep up with defenses, which supports my opinion. I consider myself a big Tiki Barber fan, but he is starting to show signs of aging, just like almost all running backs over the age of 30. At any rate, he is still around, and had a huge game last week. Hopefully he'll reconsider his decision before next season, and the mighty G Men will have their main weapon in the offense for many more games.
posted by Kendall at 01:50 PM on October 19
but he dosen't have one rushing touchdowns yet. Could that possibly be because the Giants take him out during goal line situations? He isnt as fast as he compared to last year, and between the tackles Tiki rarely gets more than 3 or 4 yards. Not all running backs need to run between the tackles to get yards. Many runners can thrive off the outside running game. Not all runners are between the tackles runners nor do they have to be between the tackles runners. Whether they run straight up the middle or from sideline to sideline doesn't matter as long as they are gaining yards. Tiki has come out with statements saying how much longer he has to prepare for each game to keep up with defenses, which supports my opinion. I consider myself a big Tiki Barber fan, but he is starting to show signs of aging, If Tiki Barber is showing signs of aging, I'd hate to find out what signs other running backs are showing, especially since Tiki Barber is currently leading the league in rushing yards. Additionally, defenses are evolving and becoming much tougher to move the ball against. I would assume that it is not only Barber who has to spend more time preparing for games, but the majority of offensive players as well. Plus, I can't see how Barber spending more time preparing to keep up with defenses supports your theory.
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 02:09 PM on October 19
Yeah, but you forget to mention that last year untill halfway through the season Tiki was used in goaline situations. Jacobs was put in because he was actually effective inside. Tiki dosent have to be a force running inside, but has been in past seasons. If you take your theory into effect (that defenses are getting better), then you also have to consider that offense (particually in this situation offensive lineman) get better at the same pace. Barber's thing about getting ready for games was made quite public, and showed that both he and Warrick Dunn (also above 30) have more trouble each week preparing for games. If Tiki had no signs of aging, then why is he considering retirement? If its only from an injury point of vew I can see it, but according to your own comment, Tiki is still a great back that isnt showing any signs of aging. So I dont really know what you are trying to say, because all I said was that he his physical abilities are slowly getting worse- like almost all running backs over 30.
posted by Kendall at 03:17 PM on October 19
being the great cowboy fan i am and also an a fan of the Seminoles since 88 this great guy has caused some of my most unhappy days as a sports fan, yet i would hate to see a good guy go. but at the same time it shows that not all football players depend on football as their life rather as something that was a good thing that helped him reach his real worth
posted by byrdman822 at 04:11 PM on October 19
So I dont really know what you are trying to say, because all I said was that he his physical abilities are slowly getting worse- like almost all running backs over 30. Ok, well it's not translating to the field. Tiki leads the league in rushing and has a 5.2 ypc which is the highest of his career. If anything Tiki has gotten better with age.
posted by tron7 at 04:28 PM on October 19
Tron, Thats because Tiki is never used in short yardage situations anymore. Thats half of my point of what I am saying!
posted by Kendall at 04:37 PM on October 19
You mean, like Barry Sanders? The fact that he's not as good of a short yardage runner or that his team may not want to subject him to more punishment and risk injury does not mean he is losing skill.
posted by tron7 at 06:28 PM on October 19
Tron, Thats because Tiki is never used in short yardage situations anymore. Thats half of my point of what I am saying! Why should he be? Jacobs is quite effective inside the goaline, and hasn't given the Giants a reason for change. Also, like tron said, why should Tiki be subjected to needless punishment? If Tiki's abilities are changing with age, he will be untouchable by the time he is 50.
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 08:53 PM on October 19
My point is that Tiki is no longer effective inside (believe it or not he once was), which supports my opinion that Tiki is showing signs of aging.
posted by Kendall at 04:19 AM on October 20
My point is that Tiki is no longer effective inside So you're questioning his overall effectiveness because he doesn't run the ball like Jerome Bettis? That's ridiculous. 5.2 ypc! We're not talking about a guy touching the ball 3 times a game and having an inflated number. His carries per game this season: 18 / 21 / 14 / 23 / 26. So far this season only Philadelphia has held him under 4.6 ypc. And on top of the stats, he looks unstoppable on a far majority of runs. None of those things show signs of aging.
posted by YukonGold at 07:39 AM on October 20
Tiki confirmed what was being speculated for a few days now. After the season, he's hanging up his cleats for good.
posted by BornIcon at 08:58 AM on October 20
My point is that Tiki is no longer effective inside (believe it or not he once was), which supports my opinion that Tiki is showing signs of aging. If you mean he looks older than I agree he is showing signs of aging. If he retires after this year, the numbers say he's leaving on the top of his game and I agree with the numbers.
posted by tron7 at 10:36 AM on October 20
Yukon.... Tiki Barber was once a dominant back while running through the middle. Now that he has aged, and his physical abilities have slightly diminished, he is no longer effective inside. Anyone who watches football on a continuous basis knows that running off tackle produces a much higher YPC average rather than running inside. Jacobs now recieves that carries that Tiki once recieved inside. You can argue that Jacobs YPC is high, but this is simply due to the fact tat he hasnt rushed for many yards, and has had 4 carries over 10 yards. To say that Tiki is as good, (some people say that he's better) than he was last season seems foolish to me. I am not backing down from my position due to the fact that I have a strong basis to support my opinion. You can also find where I said that Tiki needed to rush like a Bettis- I merely stated that Tiki is no longer effective inside, which you have yet to disapprove.
posted by Kendall at 06:44 PM on October 20
Tiki Barber was once a dominant back while running through the middle. Still trying to find not only the evidence that Tiki Barber once ran through the middle but that he was "once dominant" Anyone who watches football on a continuous basis knows that running off tackle produces a much higher YPC average rather than running inside. That's funny, I thought it was mostly about blocking and avoiding tackles. To say that Tiki is as good, (some people say that he's better) than he was last season seems foolish to me. If you want to base all your statements on his impact in fantasy football that's fine, but it's quite different than assessing his ability to help the Giants win REAL football games.
posted by YukonGold at 07:55 PM on October 20
Im kinda getting pissed off about this whole thing, some people just refuse to change their minds on some things, which isnt a bad thing, but it is when im trying to prove a point about something. **Just so you know, I probably wont repost anything in this thread unless I really get P.O'd.** But, running through the tackles drastically diminishes your YPC average 95% of the time (according to some research I have comprised). As great as Jerome Bettis was, his career YPC was a measly 3.9 yards. On the contrary, Barry Sanders, a great back who almost always had success outside had a career average of 5.0 YPC. I dont know what else you want me to say to further back my stance without devoting alot of time I don't have to this, that or the next thing you throw my way. All I can say is that Tiki Barber isnt as good as he once was, and he cannot run the ball as physically through the middle anymore. When Tiki was in his prime, and Dayne was out of the picture, Barber had lots of success running the ball in the middle. If you look back to 2002 or 2004, Barber had a large number of touchdowns under his belt, but this year hasn't gotten one touchdown running the ball. As far as Tiki helping the Giants win "REAL" games, I dont see how he really "won" anything. I doubt if you watch Giants games as actively as I do, since you live a much greater distance away. But if you think about it, the Giants aren't winning very many games, and most of the crucial points are Eli Manning's responsibility- not Tiki's. In fact, when the Giants reach the Red Zone, Tiki is takne out of the game alltogether. Does this mean that Tiki is no longer effective in the trenches anymore? I think that this would be a very good indication that Tiki is no longer the running back he once was. Even when Jacobs struggled in the goaline situations last year, Coughlin refused to put in Tiki. As much as I respect Tiki and the Giants, Tiki's torch was alot brighter in previous years.
posted by Kendall at 08:38 PM on October 20
Damn it Yukon, the kid's trying to prove a point. Stop having your own opinions so much! Dang!
posted by The_Black_Hand at 08:45 AM on October 21
As great as Jerome Bettis was, his career YPC was a measly 3.9 yards. On the contrary, Barry Sanders, a great back who almost always had success outside had a career average of 5.0 YPC You picked two guys and say that proves your point? Ignoring the fact that two cherry-picked examples do not a rule make, Sanders was the focus of the Detroit offense. Bettis played on some bad Rams teams and then had a very specific role at the end of his career that would clearly have a negative effect on his YPC. You don't have time to devote to this? Please.
posted by yerfatma at 08:46 AM on October 21
Im kinda getting pissed off about this whole thing, some people just refuse to change their minds on some things, which isnt a bad thing, but it is when im trying to prove a point about something. Hypocrite. When Tiki was in his prime, and Dayne was out of the picture, Barber had lots of success running the ball in the middle. If you look back to 2002 or 2004, Barber had a large number of touchdowns under his belt, but this year hasn't gotten one touchdown running the ball. What about in 2003 when he only had two touchdowns? Did he magically lose his ability then regain it the next year? You're whole arguement seems to hinge on the fact that since Barber doesn't have touchdowns, he isn't effective inside, thus making him an aging running back. The reason your logic is flawed is because he isn't used in those situations anymore since Brandon Jacobs excells in goaline situations. To go with the Bettis example. Last year Willie Parker came into his own as a running back. However, would you rather have Parker running the ball at the goaline or Bettis? Some players make their living off the ability to gain a few tough yards, Tiki Barber isn't one of those players. However, as evidenced by other comments, this doesn't mean Tiki is a slouch at running back. Leading the league in rushing yards should mean something. As much as I respect Tiki and the Giants, Tiki's torch was alot brighter in previous years. Barber is on pace to get 1,700 yards which would be the second highest total of his career. without devoting alot of time I don't have to this, It's the weekend. Last time I checked high schools in Connecticut don't have school on the weekends.
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 12:07 PM on October 21
Not to mention the size difference between Sanders and Bettis. Being fifty pounds lighter I would hope one would be able to manage a higher YPC. OTOH being fifty pounds bigger you'd better be able to run up the middle. The bus had no need to run outside, he was to slow and would have been caught. In fact, when the Giants reach the Red Zone, Tiki is takne out of the game alltogether. Does this mean that Tiki is no longer effective in the trenches anymore? Or could this mean the need for a better offensive coordinator or head coach? As great as Jerome Bettis was, his career YPC was a measly 3.9 yards Lets not forget that measly 3.9 YPC is over a 13 year career that covered 192 games*, 13,662 yds*, and 91 TD's*. Nothing to take lightly. *regular season only*
posted by jojomfd1 at 12:19 PM on October 21
It's the weekend. Last time I checked high schools in Connecticut don't have school on the weekends. And last time I checked, lots of people do things besides dedicating the majority of their lives on the computer. Barber is on pace to get 1,700 yards which would be the second highest total of his career. He is also on pace to get zero touchdowns, whether running, re3cieving, or otherwise. That's funny, I thought it was mostly about blocking and avoiding tackles. Yeah- and last time I checked, there are alot more potential tacklers in the middle than there are outside. Besides some really fast DE's, OLB's, and DB's (who by the way cannot tackle very well) there is virtually nobody else who can stop you. Inside the entire defense comes after you, and overall, the middle of the field is more cluttered with fewer holes. What about in 2003 when he only had two touchdowns? Did he magically lose his ability then regain it the next year? If you watched the Giants at all in 2003, you would know that they finished 4-12, and had no offense. Collins was their QB, and lord knows how well he did. Nobody (including Tiki) had many rushing touchdowns. Dorsey Levens had the most with something like 3 TD's, which is nothing great. The Giants played much better in 2004 though, and Tiki had another stellar season. If you look back at my first comment on this thread, it's more than likely you'll understand where I am coming from. Don't even think about my Bettis/ Sanders example for a minute, and look at my reasonings for why Tiki isnt as dominant as he was in previous years. Just try to see what I am trying to say without jumping all over it first. Understand ive been a Giants fan my entire life, and am a big fan of the Barber brothers, and respect Tiki very much. All I am trying to do is explain my reasoning on how Tiki isnt as effective as he was last year. Either way, best of luck to him and the Giants this season.
posted by Kendall at 06:22 PM on October 21
If you look back at my first comment on this thread, it's more than likely you'll understand where I am coming from. I think we've all zeroed in on your shoot-from-the-hip, no-evidence postion.
posted by yerfatma at 12:00 AM on October 22
Yeah- and last time I checked, there are alot more potential tacklers in the middle than there are outside. Besides some really fast DE's, OLB's, and DB's (who by the way cannot tackle very well) there is virtually nobody else who can stop you. Inside the entire defense comes after you, and overall, the middle of the field is more cluttered with fewer holes. No fucking way! I wonder why he runs on the outside then? Seems he should challenge himself instead of trying to get yards I guess.
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 07:01 AM on October 22
Dude, you've officially lost this argument. Not that you were ever winning, mind you, but you've definitely lost. You started an argument with no empirical backup, no facts, no nothing, got called on it, stammered and spouted and stuttered, and, well, you should just give up and get back to your obviously very fulfilling social life that leaves you with so little time to devote to this subject.
posted by The_Black_Hand at 09:04 AM on October 22
some people just refuse to change their minds on some things, which isnt a bad thing, but it is when im trying to prove a point about something. Can this comment can ever be topped? Amazing.
posted by YukonGold at 09:35 AM on October 22
Well yukon can you do it with pictures?
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 10:55 AM on October 22
Dear Peter King, I just read today's Monday Morning Quarterback and you ask..."Not many people will buy this, but Barber's been the best back in football over the last few years. Sit on the barstool next to me and let's argue that one, if you can." I'm not willing to stick my head into that massacre, given all the stats you provide in the table, but I know someone who will. Scroll up a little and you'll see he's convinced that Tiki Barber is on the decline because he doesn't run like a fullback. I've had a really hard time arguing with him. Apparently, I don't watch enough football and I haven't been a Giants fan as long as him (although I'm pretty sure with any luck I might get lucky and shoot that one down just by mentioning the names Joe Morris and Ottis Anderson). So, I could really use your help. Thanks, Yukon. ps. He's not a big fan of the Red Sox either so you may want to get a snack ready.
posted by YukonGold at 11:53 AM on October 23
These are Peter Kings' MMQ stats for RB, check it out: Stacking up the top RBs Player Games Rushing (Att.-Yds.-Avg.) Receiving (No.-Yds.-Avg.) Yards from Scrimmage (Total-Per Game) Tiki Barber 37 781-3911-5.0 128-1298-10.1 5209-140.8 LaDainianTomlinson 37 803-3270-4.1 136-1057-7.8 4327-116.9 Edgerrin James 38 853-3486-4.1 119-957-8.0 4443-116.9 Shaun Alexander 34 788-3763-4.8 43-270-6.3 4033 -115.2 Clinton Portis 37 793-3245-4.1 85-606-7.1 3851-104.0
posted by BornIcon at 12:19 PM on October 23
Or to quickly summarize, he ranks #1 in all three categories over the time span.
posted by YukonGold at 12:31 PM on October 23
I think I heard an "uncle".
posted by mjkredliner at 12:36 PM on October 23
No hard feelings to anyone here.... I admit that I have lost this battle. Barber's touchdowns a down, but everyone has shown how Barber is still an elite back, and maybe the best back in the NFL. So.... basically I am admitting that either A.) I was wrong or B.)I had no substantial evidence to support my position Either way, no hard feeling to anyone here.
posted by Kendall at 06:59 PM on October 23
He's not a big fan of the Red Sox either so you may want to get a snack ready. Just imagine if redsoxrgay was still around...
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 01:58 PM on October 24
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