Coming into the NFL, Tim Tebow was a long shot to be a starting quarterback.
But he took over for Denver last year and appeared to make progress — until this offseason, when he may have hurt his chances at a permanent starting job even more.
Most critics would agree that the area where Tebow needs help is his throwing motion. He takes a while to wind up to pass, resulting in fumbles and poor timing with receivers. His accuracy has also been a major drawback.
But while Tebow spent some time in his free months working on his passing, he also made some curious choices in his other workouts — choices that may make him better at the halfback-style game he popularized as a college quarterback, but not as the NFL passer that Tebow says he wants to be.
Tebow weighed 238 pounds last year with the Broncos — pretty big for a quarterback — and he spent this offseason beefing up even more.
The reason Tebow added the weight, according to the Wall Street Journal article poking into Tebow’s workout plans, was that he thought he had to be bigger and stronger to take hits under center.
Tebow is now 250 pounds — and that has some people worrying that he won’t be much of a quarterback anymore. Historically, quarterbacks haven’t been that big, and the ones that have — Daunte Culpepper, JaMarcus Russell and Byron Leftwich — haven’t been that good. The thinking goes that adding all that size cuts down on precision and flexibility.
The Jets have been mostly using Tebow as a halfback or blocker as he backs up Mark Sanchez, but Tebow has said he wants to be an NFL quarterback. Even if he turns into a quarterback who tends to run a lot, as is Tebow’s forte, he still has to hit his spots — and adding so much bulk would dent his already-sub-50 percent completion percentage.
Furthermore, the Wall Street Journal reports, the amount of time Tebow spent with all his conditioning and bulking up in the offseason means he was spending less time studying tape or learning how to throw.
“I felt it was best for what I thought I was going to be asked to do,” Tebow told the Wall Street Journal.
In that regard, he’s right, since the Jets have needed him to block and run. But if Tebow is ever going to take over for Sanchez or lead another franchise from under center, his workout focus may get a second look.