Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette reports that the Pittsburgh Steelers are not interested Tiki Barber. It was reported earlier that Barber had some interest in joining the Steelers but that seems like a longshot if Bouchette’s report end up being true.
Today’s Tiki Barber rumors suggest that the Pittsburgh Steelers are one possible option for him once free agency is finally underway. According to Paul Schwartz of the New York Post, Barber has Pittsburgh pegged as one of the teams that he would like to play for upon returning to the NFL.
“There could be something down the line with Barber and the Steelers, according to two sources who stated that Barber would certainly be interested in restarting his career in Pittsburgh,” writes Paul Schwartz.
There are probably a lot of veteran players that would like the chance to play for Mike Tomlin but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the Steelers have mutual interest. Mewelde Moore was their third-down running back last season and he will be a free agent at some point so the team will have a roster spot available. There’s no question that Rashard Mendenhall is the teams featured running back but this seems like a possibility for Barber.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
As for the Tampa Buccaneers, who have already been rumored to be a possible destination for Barber, Martin Fennelly of the Tampa Tribune lays out some of the reasons why Barber is not a fit for the young Buc’s. Tampa Bay is in need of a veteran third-down running back but it would make sense for them to retain a player like Cadillac Williams than bring in Barber despite the fact that the his twin brother Ronde is already on their team.
Fennelly makes a valid point about some of the problems that Barber caused for the Giants after he had retired from the NFL. Tiki took shots at his former team and his former head coach Tom Coughlin. Whether it was attempt to make him more relevant in the media or a personal position that he actually believed in, it could cost him creditability in a locker.
Teams cannot contact Barber because of the ongoing issues surrounding the new CBA but it will be interesting to see if any teams show interest in signing him. Just to reiterate, Barber is 36 and hasn’t played in four years which makes him a huge risk for any team to take on.