Can you say, “It’s Tebow Time!”? What a majority of Broncos Nation has been clamoring for is finally here: Tim Tebow has been named the starting quarterback in Denver. Now the question of whether Tim Tebow can be a starting QB in the NFL will finally start to be answered. It’s been debated often since the 2010 draft, when Denver made the former Heisman Trophy-winner their 1st-round pick.
The Tebow detractors will tell you that because of a long, slow release and the fact that he played his college ball in a non-Pro-style offense, which fit his strengths perfectly, he will never be more than an average, non-conventional QB in the NFL. On the other hand the Tebow lovers are of the opinion that none of that matters. They say the guy is the ultimate competitor and a leader who works harder than anyone else and has the ability to will him and his team to victories (i.e. Florida’s two national titles). This is what I do know:
1. I was at the Broncos/Chargers game this past weekend and saw firsthand how the atmosphere in the stadium changed when he entered the game. He has a way of making people believe that they have a chance when he is in the game.
2. He might not play the position in a “conventional” way, but he did lead a team that couldn’t do anything offensively for three quarters to two touchdowns, and got his team to a point where a batted pass was all that kept the Broncos from pulling out a victory that seemed impossible just 30 minutes earlier. I know every player and coach will take wins over being “conventional” every day of the week and twice on Sunday. If he leads the Broncos to victories no one will care how he does it.
3. The pundits say Tebow throws an inaccurate ball, and if you watched the 2nd half Sunday, you would have to agree. But I have to believe that with reps, this will improve. Will he ever have the accuracy of, say, Troy Aikman? I doubt it, but with all his other talents, he might be able to make up for it.
4. He has the uncanny ability to get his teammates fired up and playing with more enthusiasm and emotion, and so he seems like a guy who might be able to get more out of his teammates. He clearly did it at Florida, and based on what I saw in the 4th quarter of Sunday’s game, he will be able to do the same thing at the Pro level.
The question of whether Tim Tebow can be an effective NFL quarterback will continue – and we’ll get our first evidence one way or the other over the coming weeks. But one thing that isn’t debatable is that he is a great guy who makes a Broncos game very fun to watch. I know I can’t wait to see what happens a week from Sunday in Miami.
– Tony Boselli
Tony Boselli is an analyst for Westwood One’s coverage of the NFL. There will be no quarterback controversies in Tampa this weekend, when Drew Brees and the Saints take on Josh Freeman and the Bucs. Howard David and Tony will be on hand to call the action. Coverage begins at 3:45 PM Eastern.