The Giants Guys

Giants’ History Lesson: Tiki Barber Saves His Best For Last

Today in Great Moments in Giants’ History, we go back to RB Tiki Barber’s final regular season game in a Giant uniform: December 30th, 2006.

The Giants (7-8) travelled down to the DC to face the Redskins (5-10) with their playoff hopes barely alive and calls for Tom Coughlin’s head reverberating through Giants Stadium and in media. New York had lost six of their last seven after starting the season at 6-2. The Giants won, 34-28 and advanced to the NFC WildCard Playoffs.

Say what you want about Barber, but he brought it the last several seasons of his career. His career numbers are borderline Hall-of-Fame, and if he had stayed one more season, he would have a Super Bowl ring and enough numbers for a trip to Canton…

From the AP:

We won a game, and we got into the playoffs,” said Coughlin, who grew a little testy when reporters asked whether he was coaching for his job. “Is that good enough?”

But Coughlin’s team is there solely because of Barber. He broke a tackle in a 55-yard run — his longest of the season — in the second quarter and kept his feet as he stumbled for a 15-yard score later in the half. His crowning feat was a 50-yard run with 6:13 left in the game. He cut left, then right, broke Troy Vincent’s tackle and outran the defense to restore a 13-point lead.

Barber starred on a night when quarterbacks coach Kevin Gilbride handled the play-calling duties in place of offensive coordinator John Hufnagel. Eli Manning went 12-for-26 for 101 yards and a touchdown, and no receiver other than Barber caught more than two passes.

“That’s why he’s Tiki Barber,” LB Antonio Pierce said. “He sets his own goals and standards. His way of living is different from everybody else’s, and he shows it. He plays with a lot of heart and determination. Today he put this team and this offense on his back and did everything he could for us to win.”

From the Elias Sport Bureau:

Tiki Barber rushed for a franchise-record 234 yards in the Giants’ 34-28 win over the Redskins. If Tiki stays true to his retirement word, that would represent the most rushing yards for a player in the final regular-season game of his NFL career. The old record stood for 69 years. Hall-of-Famer Cliff Battles ran for 165 yards for the Redskins in his last regular-season game, on Dec. 5, 1937 against the Giants at the Polo Grounds.

Footage of the game with Foo Fighters twist…

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