WASHINGTON — Former New York Giants running back Tiki Barber joined The Sports Junkies on 106.7 The Fan Wednesday morning, and he didn’t mince words in his praise for Kirk Cousins, Jay Gruden and the Redskins.
After discussing his relationship with Tom Coughlin, the longtime Giants coach who stepped down this week, hosts Eric Bickel and Jason Bishop switched gears into the Redskins talk, and Barber was effusive in his comments on the Redskins’ signal caller.
Bishop started to bring up the Redskins, saying, “One team that definitely has a quarterback right now is Washington.”
Barber interrupted Bishop’s question, interjecting his thoughts on Cousins as if he couldn’t hold them back.
“Oh man, Kirk’s been playing unbelievable,” Barber said, before Bishop asked him to elaborate on his thoughts on Cousins and the Redskins’ postseason game against the Green Bay Packers.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for the Redskins to get into the second level of the playoffs because the Packers have been so dysfunctional offensively all year long,” Barber said. “Their o-line is horrendous, and Aaron Rodgers’ timing is so off with the amount of time he has to scramble in the pocket. And so it’s a huge opportunity for Washington, and so I think they should win this game at home. As far as Kirk Cousins is concerned, I love the idea that Jay Gruden finally decided to commit. For so long, it was this soap opera and drama, with Robert [Griffin III]. And whether that was fair or not, it is what it was. It was distracting from developing a player into the best player he could be, because of all the drama.”
Barber continued on with his criticism for how the Redskins wavered in their quarterback selection for so long before finally settling on Cousins, but then jumped back into the Cousins praise.
“When [Gruden] finally committed to Kirk, I had no idea what to expect from Kirk. I didn’t see him play at Michigan State. I had seen him play in relief duty, but we all know relief duty in the National Football League is one of the toughest things to do, especially with a young team and you’re a young quarterback. And so I had no expectations. But very slowly, you saw him start to do the mistake-free things, the mistake-free outings that keep you from losing a football game. I don’t want to say it’s gonna win you a game, but it keeps you from losing a football game. And then as he started to get more and more confident, pushing the ball downfield, DeSean Jackson obviously comes back from his injury, now you have big playmaking ability. He became one of the more efficient, and most efficient, quarterbacks over the last five weeks of the season, and that’s why the Redskins surged.”
The whole call is available to listen to below, and it’s worth the time. His comments on Coughlin’s personality and how he changed his entire demeanor and relationship with his team in 2007 provide insight into how his Giants teams were able to pull off a pair of Super Bowl wins, and he offers an exceptional breakdown of the looming Redskins-Packers matchup.