Marion Barber has never been a guy who will talk to the press much. His time in Dallas has been spent on the field doing his thing, and off the field avoiding everything. Personally, I like Barber and his attitude. Some players talk to the press way too much and it only serves to get them in trouble or make themselves look stupid. Barber doesn't engage in that, and good for him. So when he finally talked to the press about his dress-code violation from last week, it was an opportunity for him to say something that would be 'newsworthy'. He didn't, but his answers were 'newsworthy' because they didn't make news, they just reinforced the influence Jason Garrett is having on the team.
Were you surprised when you didn't start the game?
Barber: Can we talk about the future? The next game? The Detroit Lions?
OK, who do you think will get the first carry against the Lions?
Barber: I don't make the call. All I worry about is what we do prior to the game, how we prepare. How we work in practice. That's most important.
I'm surprised he didn't say - "We play the Detroit Lions at 12 PM CST on Sunday at Cowboys stadium. They have an awfully good defensive line, and I need to prepare and be ready for that".
There was a time when Barber's trajectory seemed to be headed to elite running back. But, his role is no longer that, nor was it ever likely to happen. Barber is still a fierce runner, but the 'Barbarian' is no longer the battering-ram he once was. Perhaps the rule about the stiff-arm enacted a few years ago took away one of his best weapoons. Perhaps he realized that the numerous punishing hits he was taking were going to shorten his career. Perhaps he just ran into a hot-streak, and has returned to his role as a serviceable, but not elite, running back.
Whatever the case, Jason Garrett has put Barber back in a role he used to do so well. That is the closer. Garrett's first week at the helm showed he wants to feature Felix Jones. Both in the running game and as the back on screens, which Garrett seems to have a fondness for. But when the Giants desperately needed to stop Dallas in the fourth quarter to get the ball back and try to pull off some kind of miracle, Garrett turned to Barber and he closed the door.
|1st and 10 at DAL 33||M.Barber up the middle to DAL 45 for 12 yards (K.Phillips, T.Thomas).|
|1st and 10 at DAL 45||M.Barber up the middle to NYG 49 for 6 yards (T.Thomas).|
|Timeout #3 by NYG at 01:54.|
|2nd and 9 at DAL 46||M.Barber left tackle to DAL 45 for -1 yards (T.Thomas).|
|3rd and 10 at DAL 45||M.Barber right tackle to NYG 37 for 18 yards (K.Phillips).|
|1st and 10 at NYG 37||J.Kitna kneels to NYG 38 for -1 yards.|
|End of Game|