Is Tim Tebow the greatest player to ever play college football? Who knows? Some would say yes, some would say no. The more important question is can Tim Tebow be Tim Tebow in the NFL? The league is another beast compared to college. Faster, stronger, and smarter players. Defenses are more sophisticated, and they spend HOURS at a time dissecting offenses whereas in college where they can only practice a few hours a day compared to all day in the NFL.
Tebow is a winner
One thing you can't say is that the kid does not win. He's done it at every level. You can't deny that, you can't say it was the system, or he was lucky etc. No! He's balled out, you don't win for seven years in a row without being outstanding. Listen to the legend that is Tebow. Two-time Florida Mr. Football (Florida high school Player of the Year), Parade All-American, he once finished a game in high school with a broken leg, state championship as a senior, Lebron James like high school coverage from ESPN and Sports Illustrated, labeled "The Chosen One" before he ever chose which college he'd attend.
In college, he scored on his first play ever, he helped his team win a national championship as a freshman, he won the Heisman trophy in his first year as a starting quarterback, won a second national championship in his second year as a full-time starter, had a plaque of a his famous speech after the Ole Miss loss placed outside the stadium....WHILE HE WAS STILL IN SCHOOL....and he broke the SEC touchdown record that was formerly held by Herschel Walker. A lot of people have accolades, but few know how to be great and win, Tebow has this figured out.
Tebow under the microscope
Another thing you can't call Tebow is a punk. He doesn't back down from challenges. Most people in Tebow's position wouldn't play in the Senior Bowl as he did this past weekend. Tebow, along with other notable Seniors, participated in the Senior Bowl and was highly scrutinized along with the other top seniors this year who chose to play. I tried to find a better word for scrutinize, but I couldn't. Either way, scrutinize isn't the word for what's being done to Tebow. He's being evaluated as if he's a black quarterback in the 60's that no one secretly wants to succeed. Now, I know everyone is evaluated harshly, because these players are six and seven figure investments. These scouts and GMs are essentially financial advisers for the owners, fans, taxpayers, etc. If you are wasting and losing peoples money as a scout or GM, then you can be sure you'll lose your job if you don't make good investments. So it's understandable the level at which they scrutinize these kids, and it's also understandable why you evaluate someone as a mid-round talent compared to an early round talent. The later you are drafted the less money you are paid, the less money you are paid, the more money for the company you have saved.
These scouts and GMs are essentially "well-paid skeptics" so they have to error on the side of caution. I mean, people have families to feed, why risk picking someone like Wes Welker in the third round when he's clearly not even going to cut it in the league? Right? Yeah, every three years after a draft you can easily pick out the busts, the booms, and those 10k gold elephants in the room that went unnoticed.
I say all that to say this. Tebow is going to be scrutinized, because he's going to cost a ball club a lot of money, and it's a toss up right now of whether or not he'll be worth that money or not. He didn't play great, he went 8 for 12 for 57 yards and lost two fumbles. They say his release is too long, his footwork sucks, his mechanics are off, and he is not accurate at all. Duh, I could have told you that a long time ago. My personal opinion is that Tebow is gamer not a tester. He will pass the eye ball test, but when it comes to the quarterback and the speed test he will fail those. He's not prototypical, because he wasn't taught to be prototypical at Florida or Nease. He's not fast, nope, no Michael Vick burners in Tebow's calves, sorry. Quick? eh, jury is still out, I'd say no. Is he a winner? Absolutely!
BOOM OR BUST
I think Tebow will succeed in the NFL. Note, that I didn't say as a QB. I'm not sold on Tebow as a QB to be honest with you. I want to say he'll win, if given the chance, but I just don't know. I mean hell, you'd like to think that Sam Bradford and Jimmy Clausen are sure things in the NFL, but no one really knows. Ben Roethlisberger was drafted after Eli Manning and Philip Rivers and Ben has two Super Bowl rings and is the better QB right now at this point in their careers. You could error on the side of caution with Tebow and make him an H-back. He's sure to succeed right? No one freaking knows? If it ain't broke don't fix it right? Let Tebow see what he can do as a quarterback for three years, because it's going to take at least that much time for him to get accustomed to the NFL game. Philip Rivers and Aaron Rodgers sat for a while and look how good they turned out. If the three year experiment doesn't work, then have Tebow switch to a new position. Another thing people need to realize Tebow is going to bust his ass to succeed. He's not just going to go out there and expect a starting job be given to him. I mean, damn near anyone that works hard enough in this country and puts their mind to something can achieve it if they have the proper tools to do so. Tebow has the tools: size, good arm strength, played QB for the past six years, and NFL coaching.
The one thing that surprises me is that how good and coach-able a player Tebow is referred as he's not been openly willing to accept a position change. I'd figure Tebow would be saying, I'll play any position that I can play to continue playing the sport I love. His pride seems to be a little Eric Crouch-ish. Scott Frost had no problem switching to play safety for the Jets, he just couldn't cut it. Crouch just quit once he couldn't get his way. Antwan Randle El had not problem going from full-time QB to WR. I just hope Tebow's pride doesn't get in the way of furthering his career and helping the team that drafts him. He doesn't seem like a quitter or sore loser, but I don't know, I didn't think Crouch would retire. I still think black QBs are scrutinized unfairly, whether it's done consciously or subconsciously. It still happens and if you don't believe me, I'd more than happy to argue you down until I make you feel like your six years old. I do find it odd that Tebow is receiving the same scrutiny as if he was a Michael Vick or a Vince Young. It just goes to show that GMs and scouts may see color in the background, but all they really see is an owner, fans, dollars and job security in the foreground.
I'll stand by my statement that Tebow will succeed in the NFL. Success, defined as last longer than the four year average NFL career. Anytime you can make 350k plus for four or more years doing something you love is always going to be considered a success in my book. Slow release, inconsistent accuracy, bad footwork, wins football games, and more importantly wins championships. Yep, sounds like bad tester but a great gamer to me.
That's all I got,
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