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Eli Manning dismisses Tiki's call for Coughlin ouster

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Tiki Barber wiggled his way back into the 24-hour news cycle this week. As you might have guessed, he did so by saying something critical about the New York Giants.

Barber, whom Tom Coughlin helped mold into one of the best running backs in football before his ill-timed retirement in 2007, told a Los Angeles radio station the time has come for the Giants to fire their longtime head coach.

Eli Manning -- he himself once the target of Barber's acidic tongue -- said little but conveyed much when told of his former teammate's opinion on Wednesday.

"That's nice of him," Manning said, according to the New York Daily News. "It's good to hear from old Tiki."

The quarterback was asked if it's a distraction when a former teammate calls for the coach to be fired.

"I think," Eli replied, "it depends on your opinion of that player."

NFL Media colleague Judy Battista remarked that Manning used a "sledgehammer wrapped in velvet" here. We quite like that.

Barber's opinion isn't exactly malicious, or even a bad one. Coughlin is now 68 years old, and the Giants have slipped into something of an organizational malaise since their improbable Super Bowl run in 2011. But Barber should know by now that any negative opinion on the Giants will come off as sour grapes for a guy who just missed the Super Bowl gravy train.

Then again, that realization would require a sliver of self-awareness. We're not convinced that's in play here.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast previews Chiefs-Raiders and reacts to the drama in D.C. as well as Adrian Peterson's suspension. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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