Has there ever been an NFL game between two terrible teams so hyped before last Sunday's Denver-Miami contest? The teams came in boasting a combined 1-9 record. Yet all the analysts and sports shows were watching for one reason. That reason was Tim Tebow was starting.
And what a start it was. For three and a half quarters, Tebow was dreadful. I've had the pleasure to watch the game earlier this week on replay. It was painful and made me hate football for three hours.
Of course, the Tebow lovers out there will point out that it was the first time in NFL history a team came back from a 15-point deficit with five minutes left to win. This is true, but come on. We're talking about the Miami Dolphins. The 0-6 Miami Dolphins who have lost nine straight games if you go back to last year. The Miami Dolphins who were starting Matt Moore at quarterback.
Tebow was 13-for-27 with two touchdowns and less than 170 yards through the air. He did well with some runs and ended up ith more than 60, but it was not a good start.
He absolutely had a great throw to tight end Daniel Fells to set up the touchdown. Fells also made a great catch. And on that second touchdown, go back and look at how at least one offensive lineman was illegally down the field. Just something to keep in mind before we declare this one of the greatest wins in the history of the sports world.
There was also a great story on Grantland that pointed out how the rest of the Broncos team was more responsible for the win than Tebow. They got onside kick, and they recovered the fumble that set up the winning field goal.
This is really turning into more of a hatefest than I intended, so I apologize. You can't deny that Tebow is a born leader. His team rallies around him wherever he plays. He is charismatic and you can tell he lives for the game. He is the type of player you want in the locker room and to have your back.
Right now there seems to be a trend with all of these teams (I'm looking at you Ravens, Dolphins, Colts and Jets) having players call out coaches and fellow players. Tebow will never do that. Look back to his press conference after he and the Florida Gators lost to Ole Miss. He took responsibility, promised he'd do what it took to ensure the team never lost again that season, and then he delivered. There is no question he has the heart and attitude to succeed in the NFL. I just don't think he has the skill set.
You can have an awkward throwing motion in the NFL and get away with it. Phillip Rivers is the perfect example. The difference between Rivers and Tebow, though, is that Rivers' motion allows him to get rid of the ball quick. Tebow's takes a lot of time. In the NFL, that usually translates to problems.
Tebow also doesn't see the field well right now. This is something he should improve on, but it's not happening right now. If his man isn't open when he looks at him, Tebow isn't throwing it that way. The guy could be open in another step, but Tebow is already looking elsewhere or tucking it. I think that should change as he gets more comfortable with his receivers and they with him. He did just lose his best option in Brandon Lloyd, so I'll give him the benefit of the doubt there.
So now that I've made nice, I want to get back to all the hype surrounding that game. It was so overblown and ridiculous. It overshadowed so many other, more interesting storylines (This seems to be a running theme with Tebow coverage). Let's look at a few that were hardly covered, if at all, by the media.
- The Texans destroying Tennessee and maybe on their way to a first-ever playoff appearance
- The Chiefs shutting out the Raiders and improving to 3-3. They've won three in a row and the AFC West is wide open
- The Chargers' atrocious clock management, strategy and execution in the second half
- Can analysts finally admit they may have been wrong when they gushed about Joe Flacco?
- What are the Dolphins waiting for in firing Tony Sparano? The team has given up on him and life
- Here are some players with a higher passer rating than Kevin Kolb: Alex Smith, Curtis Painter, Andy Dalton, Mark Sanchez, Donovan McNabb, Cam Newton, Tavaris Jackson, Matt Cassel and Chad Henne
- Other than Jackson, Cassel and Henne, all of the above names also have higher passer ratings than Rivers as well
- Other than his 10-catch, 172-yard performance against New England, Vincent Jackson has 14 catches for 251 yards in the other five games combined this season. Thhis is a year after he held out for more than half the season and tried to hold up CBA negotiations this summer because he didn't want to be franchised. I drafted him in three fantasy leagues. Balls