Antonio Pierce isn’t embracing Tiki Barber’s comeback

Former Giants teammate questions running back’s locker-room presence

This Tiki Barber comeback isn’t really gaining the loft he might have hoped for Tuesday.

First, the New York Giants, who hold his rights, said they plan to release him when the labor situation between the NFL and players’ union is settled. Then, former teammate Antonio Pierce, now an ESPN analyst, wasn’t exactly jumping up and and down at the news.

“Tiki Barber, the football player, great player, will be very productive probably in certain situations, third-down, maybe can help out a young quarterback, some young running backs, depending on who it is,” Pierce said on “NFL Live.” “Tiki Barber, the leader, the person in that locker room? He is not going to do anything for your team.”

But wait. It gets better.

“Now if that is the guy you think you are bringing in, you might want to look in another direction. From personal experience, he didn’t do anything to help the Giants [in] 2006 when he decided to retire in the middle of the season and then months later question our quarterback and our head coach. That is my problem with Tiki Barber ... the guy can play. Can he do it four years later? I don’t think he can.”

Tom Coughlin no doubt will be asked about his former running back when he talks with theater patrons at a Broadway performance of “Lombardi” on Thursday night (helpful hint: get there 30 minutes early or he’ll fine your sorry backside).

Tom Coughlin doing talkback with Lombardi audience after Thurs. night Broadway performance. First question: Coach, what about Tiki?less than a minute ago via webPaul Schwartz
NYPost_Schwartz

Pat Hanlon of the Giants’ PR staff tweets: We wish him the best. We’ll see.

And...from the cheap seats:

I’m already looking forward to the wonderful irony when Tiki gets cut so the team can instead keep the 23-year old running back.less than a minute ago via webWilliam Klein
WilliamMKlein

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.

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