When talking about the greatest running backs of all-time, chances are Tiki Barber‘s name isn’t going to be brought up. It’s fair, seeing as he was never really a superstar for the Giants. However, when talking about his overall impact in the Big Apple, he was nearly larger than life.
What’s more impressive is, as Barber’s career matured, so did his ability to make an impact on Sundays. Like a fine wine, he got better with age. Sure, Barber was a solid piece of the New York offense for the first few years of his career. However, the fun didn’t really begin until 2002, his sixth year in the league.
From there, it was nothing but highlights for Barber — apart from the fumbles.
In each of his last five seasons, Barber amassed more than 1,200 rushing yards. On top of that, he put together two straight campaigns during which he led the NFL in yards from scrimmage. Whether on the ground or through the air, the 1997 second-round pick found ways to put the Giants in the best possible position to win.
His final three years in New York resulted in Pro Bowl appearances, his candidacies aided by the fixing of his fumbling problem. Although the end of his time with the Giants was soured by his public comments towards Eli Manning, there’s no denying he was an impact performer when he was on the field for the G-Men.
If only he hadn’t jumped the gun on retirement…