In the span of 48 hours, Denver Broncos’ quarterback Tim Tebow went from the full-time starter entering the 2012 NFL season to a potential trade target once Peyton Manning alerted the team he was going to sign with them. For a man who was part of the reason on how a team went from the bottom of the AFC West to division champions and defeating the highly touted Pittsburgh Steelers in the first-round of the 2011 NFL postseason, it was the issue of trust that might’ve led to his demise at Mile High.
While it is a sad ending to such a great story, TebowMania was one of the greatest fads to come out since FernandoMania with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Tebow wasn’t originally drafted by John Elway and John Fox, but rather by former head coach Josh McDaniels. It was a questionable pick at first, since many NFL draft insiders had Tebow going as early as the third-round because of his inability to have a fast delivery or even an accurate arm.
Once McDaniels was canned, Tebow became just another version of the ugly duckling; the one player with the ugliest style of play that nobody in the organization really fully committed to. Since we know the ending to this story, I’m not going to go in detail, but rather say Tebow came in for experimental reasons and ended his season giving the Broncos hope.
What caused Tebow to rise to popularity so quickly was because of ESPN’s First Take. On the show, talent Skip Bayless was always banking on Tebow to win. It got so atrocious that a DJ made all of his Tebow references into a song called, “All He Does is Win.” Every day Bayless was on, a Tebow topic was included, whether it involved the actual sport or comparing him to another athlete.
Tebow’s religious views got in the way as well. Once TebowMania hit its apex, his genuflect to his god by praying on one knee became mocked. It would be known as “Tebowing.” Tebowing became the newest fad. Everyone would be posting pictures of themselves genuflecting like Tebow in front of random monuments and places.
His Christian views and loyalty to his higher power was made fun of sometimes (and still is today). We have the “3:16″ theory thanks to Tebow. John 3:16 is his favorite Bible passage. Tebow used to write the passage on his eye black before every game at Florida. During the wild-card playoff game against the Steelers, Tebow threw for a career-high 316 yards, while having 31.6 yards per completion. Some of Tebow’s other stats would add up to 316 in several games. By people using this as some ridiculous conspiracy theory, many assumed his god followed him everywhere.
The first thing that popped into my head once I heard about Peyton Manning was where will Tebow be traded to. Let’s be honest; you could tell all season that Elway didn’t want to commit to Tebow. While the Broncos were winning close games that resulted from miracles like fumbles and 50+-yard field goals, he always said that he would “try” Tebow as their full-time starter next year. He had no choice to say that. If he ever came out in public and said, “I’m not going with Tebow as our starter,” the fans would turn on him and Elway would receive so much criticism that Skip Bayless would force him to go on ESPN’s First Take to have a boxing match with his Tebow bandwagon cheering him along.
Elway made a smart move to end this phenomena of Tebow by bringing in possibly the greatest quarterback to enter free agency, showing his authority in Denver while still receiving respect from the Tebow fanatics.
The team that makes the most sense for Tebow to go is Jacksonville. The Jaguars have one of the worst fan bases in the league, almost blacking out their games on national television from lack of support. They have a top ten defense statistically along with a offensive weapon in running back Maurice Jones-Drew and a tight end in Mercedes Lewis. Jacksonville also has the seventh-overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft, which they might use on a receiver or offensive lineman, and are starting over with a new head coach in Mike Mularkey.
It’s a great fit because Tebow would enter a team that is rebuilding in a few aspects that needs a quarterback to build around. He might not have the most original throwing motion or style of play, but if the offensive game plan is built around his talents, we’ll have to wait and see how far it can take him.
Another reason why Jacksonville fits is because of Tebow’s alma mater in Florida. Not even the winning part of having him on your team but the amount of fans he’ll bring in from the area will help make more money to acquire more free agent talent.
One other team that has made recent headlines to acquire Tebow is the New England Patriots.I guess if you can’t beat them, join them. The Denver Broncos, led by Tebow, lost to the Patriots twice last season, including a 45-10 smothering in the second round of the NFL playoffs. McDaniels, who drafted Tebow when he was the head coach of the Broncos, is the current offensive coordinator of the team.
I can see this making sense because now the Patriots could be able to use Tebow as possibly a blocking running back or tight end; a hybrid role. The Patriots are known for having players come in and play more than one position (Troy Brown, Julian Edelman.) Of course, Tom Brady will not be dethroned unless he retires. Brady is in his mid-to-late 30′s though. With that retirement possibly on the horizon, Tebow could take over if New England really wanted him to.
One other reason why New England seems more of a clearer destination is the Jaguars recently signing quarterback Chad Henne. While the Jaguars could still trade for Tebow, it’d make little sense giving up on a quarterback like quaterback Blaine Gabbert after one rookie season with a lack of a line while having Henne for either back-up support or even to start.
It’s ironic how a young player who led his team to the playoffs be possibly dumped for an older veteran who’s coming off numerous neck surgeries. But I will digress to my article in November about Peyton Manning’s future that the NFL is a win-now business. If teams cared about the emotional state of the players, things would be a lot different. Unfortunately, Tim Tebow has become the odd man out at Mile High and could wearing a new jersey this upcoming training camp.