“He is in a crisis because of the perception that he is losing his team,” Barber said Thursday morning on a conference call for his induction into the Giants’ Ring of Honor on Sunday. “We all know that especially in New York, once the media and the perception becomes a reality, you start fighting against it. And when you are fighting against something that is not necessarily real, you make it real. That is why he is in a crisis.”
The now-outspoken Barber also believes he knows how to fix the problem.
“Tom can get the locker room back by having guys disseminate his message correctly,” Barber said. “Tom is a great coach. We all know that. He has been one since his days back at Boston College. Now he has to rely on the troops that he knows to be able get it to the guys, keep it disseminated to the rest of the team and have them believe in it. That is how coaches become successful. It is not so much about X’s and O’s for a head coach, it is about finding ways to motivate 53 different personalities.”
Either way, Barber still respects Coughlin as a coach.
“I’ve never, and I would challenge anyone to this, I have never said that Tom was a bad coach,” Barber said. “I think he is a great coach. My issue with him, and he knows what it is because we had plenty of discussions, some civil, some not, is about how you treat people. His biggest evolution is in how he’s respected his players and how he’s got them to play for him. That is why they won the Super Bowl in 2007. Now, he needs as a team, he needs to find that mutual center of respect and success will come their way.”
With Barber’s comments toward the Giants since his retirement, it will be interesting to see how the fans receive him Sunday night during the unveiling of the Ring of Honor.