Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Bring Tebow Home

Tebowmania was all over the sports media world this past season. Every sports show wasn’t complete unless there was some kind of Tebow reference. It divided experts and fans across the NFL landscape, and Tebow became the most polarizing athlete in his generation. There was no middle ground -- you either hate him or love him. It turns out Elway doesn’t love him as the Denver Broncos announced that they will be signing Peyton Manning. The first question that came to my mind had nothing to do with Peyton Manning or the Denver Broncos; instead my mind was focused on what would happen to Tim Tebow. Will he stay and try to learn behind Manning, or will he be traded to the highest bidder for pennies on the dollar? I do not disagree with the choice Bronco management chose, especially since it was clear they were not going to form this team to take advantage of Tebow’s strengths and skill sets.

I will be the first to admit that I was and still might be a Tim Tebow hater. I went so far as to explain how I felt in my article, “Tebowing”, in which I outlined the reasons why as much as I hated Tebow, I still respected him for what he does. But now I am tired of all the experts saying this guy isn’t a lock to be a starting quarterback in the league. It’s ironic how our eyes can be the reason why we become so blind -- what we see deceives us into believing something that might not be true. Many sports analysts are claiming that no team will seriously pursue trading for Tim Tebow in the coming weeks because they still do not believe in his ability to be a starter. They also point out that no coach will want to put their top quarterback through what Kyle Orton had to endure in Denver. Orton couldn’t get his team to win, and Tebow could. The truth lies in the wins and shouldn’t have to do with what we actually see. The end justifies the means (or so I thought) when it comes to sports. Winning makes everything else irrelevant, yet no one wants to admit that without Tim Tebow, the team doesn’t come close to making the playoffs; nevertheless win a playoff game.

I wish Denver would consider keeping Tebow and letting him learn behind a great like Peyton Manning. It could just be like his freshman year at Florida when he would only come in for a key plays for the starting quarterback Chris Leek. Of course this is unconventional for the NFL, but maybe that’s what this league needs. The NFL (No Fun League) needs to shake it up and stop being so stubborn. Innovation is a huge risk for coaches and management, and rarely do people want to take a chance because that’s what gets you fired. I am sure drafting Tim Tebow in the first round didn’t help Josh McDaniels keep his job. Tim would be excited and humble if given the chance to learn from an NFL great like Peyton, but the fact that he has become so marketable and lucrative for the league makes it seem obvious that Tebow will indeed be fighting for a starting role elsewhere.

This leads to the next question -- where would be a good landing spot for Tim Tebow? I have come up with a few teams that should seriously consider trading for Tebow: the New York Jets, Cleveland Browns, New England Patriots, Miami Dolphins, and Jacksonville Jaguars.

New York Jets- The Jets have expressed interest even though they just gave Mark Sanchez big money. The team should have shown more patience instead of signing Sanchez out of desperation when they realized they had no chance at Peyton Manning. Tony Sparano is the new offensive coordinator, and it's true that he would like to run the wildcat in some form while in New York. Rex Ryan has always wanted to turn the Jets into a ground and pound team, and Tebow provides both options for this team. Mark Sanchez can only manage a team at best, and he gives his teammates no confidence going into a crucial game. This defense is still one of the best units in the league, and there are enough weapons on the other side of the ball to take advantage of Tebow’s strengths.
Cleveland Browns- The Browns need much more than just a quarterback, but management/fans feel a need for a new QB even though there is no real talent on this current roster. From my past article on Colt McCoy, it is certain that I would not be a fan of this choice, but it is a strong possibility.

New England Patriots- Bill Belichick has always been unconventional and seems to find talent in many different ways. During the 2010 NFL draft, many expects actually thought the Patriots would take a chance on Tebow in a later round. Of the five scenarios, this is the only one that doesn’t have Tebow starting next season, but Tim would come in for special packages and could be a new wrinkle in the ever-changing Patriots offense. Tebow could start in the back field with Brady, giving them another running option or rolling out for a pass. Bill Belichick was willing to line up Aaron Hernandez as a running back in the playoffs -- with Tim Tebow back there, the options are endless. While set up in a power formation, you would have Tebow, Gronkowski, and Hernandez all on the field. Tom Brady would have the option of going to Wes Welker in single coverage in the flat or hand it off to Tebow.  Tim could then use a tight end as a lead blocker or dump a pass off to either tight end after the linebackers commit to stopping the run. If the asking price drops far enough, I am sure Belichick wouldn't mind picking up Tim Tebow on the cheap.
Miami Dolphins- This wouldn’t be Gator nation with the “U” right there, but it is still in the state of Florida. Tebow would be a huge fan draw and would bring energy back to a franchise that has had little to cheer for since the retirement of Dan Marino. Reggie Bush is a perfect compliment runner for Tebow, who can get to the outside quickly and run the option play -- the two of them together could be dynamic. The Dolphins have a sure-handed tight end in Anthony Fasano, which gives Tebow an option he loved in college but hasn't had in the NFL. Matt Moore finished the season very well, so management might be worried about how Tebowmania will affect their ability to put the best quarterback on the field.

Jacksonville Jaguars- This is home for Tim Tebow. He played his high school ball just outside the city. This team needs to acquire him if they want fans to drive to the ball park and save the team from a necessary move. The Jaguars played so poorly last year that they have nothing to lose by bringing in Tebow. They have a great running back in Maurice Jones-Drew who will benefit from Tebow’s ability to run. Jacksonville would quickly become one of the best running teams in the league. Blaine Gabbert is not your long-term quarterback -- he is the poster boy of why scouts need to rethink a player's abilities for the NFL. He looks like a top quarterback, and he has the arm strength, speed, and quickness, but none of this matters if he isn’t able to win. Just like in the book Moneyball, the NFL shouldn’t be about how a player does in the gym, what body type he has, or his throwing motion. The question is: does this player win football games? Tebow has always won; the same cannot be said about Blaine, not even in college. This franchise is falling apart, and in my opinion, their only option now is to go all out for Tim Tebow and bring him home.

Photos courtesy of Sports Illustrated Julie Jacobson/AP, Jack Demsey/AP, and Sam Greenwood/Getty Images


Tebow is done. He was a great story last year, I will not deny that. But it was a hoax.

I give him all the props in the world for that playoff game against Pittsburgh. I will not take that away from him. That performance was clutch in every since of the word. But during the 6 straight winning streak regular season, he beat Oak, KC, NYJ, SD, Minnesota, and Chicago. Not exactly great teams. He also ended the year on a three game losing streak, putting the team's playoff hopes in doubt...but nobody seems to remember that.

You forgot your beloved Green Bay Packers. Tebow signs for cheap. Rodgers gets hurt in the SB. Tebow wins it on a hail mary to himself. SB MVP. SB Champ. Done.

jk. But maybe...

A 6-game NFL win streak is impressive no matter what.

wow, jets just traded for Tebow...

What a steal. Hate him or not, what a steal.

"or will he be traded to the highest bidder for pennies on the dollar?"

Like I said in the article... Denver wasn't going to get much for Tebow, since they made it obvious they didn't want him. I guess GCAS writers will need to make a trip to NYC again to witness Tebowmania!

Some really strange trades lately...Demeco Ryans for a 4th rounder + 12 spots higher in the 3rd? Tebow for a 4th and 6th??

Trade on hold, Jets didn't realize they have to pay over 5 million to the Broncos for the advance Tebow received in his contract for the next 3 years... It is reported that the Jags are in pursuit again for Tebow!

It's official Jets get Tebow after they are willing to pay the extra 5 million dollars.

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