« Kid Clutch does it again for Florida Gators | Main | Steve Addazio will be "point man" in hiring of new Gators defensive coordinator, according to athletics director »

Much too early to write off Tim Tebow

GAINESVILLE -- How harsh is the criticism about Tim Tebow these days? Even a Jacksonville Jaguars offensive lineman is calling out Florida's former quarterback. Here's what the Jags' Uche Nwaneri wrote recently on Jaguars.com after apparently becoming annoyed by so many friends and fans asking him if he's excited about the chance of Tebow being drafted by Jacksonville:

"1. He can't throw, PERIOD.
2. He can't read any coverage other than probably cover 2 or man.
3. The QB Wildcat WILL NOT WORK IN THIS LEAGUE. PERIOD.
4. He doesn't know how to take a snap from center.
5. HE CAN'T THROW, and that's really something you either have or not."

Nwaneri apparently wants out of Jacksonville Municipal Stadium faster than Georgia coach Mark Richt. Let's look beyond that, however, and focus on something interesting that Tebow might have to deal with when he first reports to rookie mini-camp this offseason. Not everyone is going to like him and, apparently, not everyone is going to even think that he deserves to be there. Initially, some pro football players might even resent Tebow. These opinions will not last. Let me explain.

Tebow is not a phony. He still seems pretty innocent. His perception of reality is slightly skewed about some things (that's to be expected) but it's not like his public image is much different than his actual personality. Sure, he likes MMA and stuff like that but whatever. (Mental note: Begin preparing Tebow-should-become-MMA-fighter blog if this whole football thing doesn't work out.) The point is this: NFL players are professionals and they're going to respect Tebow once he shows up and starts working.

As for Nwaneri's comments, let's run down the line:

1. Tebow can't throw, QUESTION MARK? Yes, Tebow can throw. It's not like his arm is weak. Anyone who says Tebow has a weak arm is wrong. It's simply not true. Anyone who says Tebow is not an accurate passer has no video evidence to prove that statement. I've watched Tebow play quarterback for the last four years. He's accurate. And what the heck does this offensive lineman know? He's an offensive lineman. He blocks defensive lineman and linebackers.

2. Everyone says Tebow can't read defenses. I've even had reporters who know nothing about football or quarterbacking or defenses try and tell me this. This is absurd. Tebow started in the Southeastern Conference for three years. His interceptions totals were always the lowest in the league. His efficiency rating was always the highest. Tebow can read defenses. People act like reading defenses is a hard thing. My 10-year-old kid reads defenses on EA Sports and has the mental capacity to audible at the line of scrimmage. I realize this is a ridiculous comparision, but that's the point. You're telling me Tim Tebow, who watches countless hours of tape and lives for football like no one else, can't read a defense? Wrong.

3. The Wildcat does work in the NFL. Teams have already proven this. If anything, the Wildcat will be a good way for Tebow to acclimate himself to the speed of the game his first one or two seasons in the league as a back-up.

4. Come on, seriously? Taking a snap from center? Next.

5. We've already established the fact that Tebow CAN THROW. If anything, he CAN THROW despite his atypical throwing motion. Just think what he'll be like once he gets that cleaned up a little bit. And don't try to tell me that Tebow can't correct whatever is wrong with his arm motion. I'm not buying it. I'm not even convinced it's really that big of a problem.

And what's this about Joe Theismann saying Tebow should quit football? What a goob.

It's much too early to write off Tebow based on one or two bad practices at the Senior Bowl, a couple fumbles in the game and the constant vomit flowing from the front of Todd McShay's face. Here's what I love about the good folks of ESPN. They've made a ton of cash flashing Tim Tebow's face on television screens over the years. It started in high school, when the network dubbed Tebow "The Chosen One." It continued through college, when ESPN seemingly camped out in Gainesville. ESPN helped Tebow win a Heisman in 2007. The network had exclusive one-on-one access to Tebow in 2008 and 2009.

In 2010, ESPN has changed up it's coverage ever so slightly. Still plenty of Tim Tebow, but now the network is making money by telling people how Tebow will fail in the NFL. Gator Clause was in Mobile for the Senior Bowl. It was like everyone who has ever covered Tebow was waiting for him to mess up so they could finally write something critical about the guy. There's nothing wrong with being critical, but let's be realistic. It was the Senior Bowl and Tebow was sick for most of the week. You think every single GM, coach and scout in the league is going to hold that against him? No.

And now some advice for Tim Tebow
Tebow needs to change some things in the next few months in order to transition smoothly into the NFL. These changes don't have anything to do with his throwing motion or five-step drop. They have to do with his family and the people surrounding him. Bob Tebow, Pam Tebow, Brothers Tebow and all the other people hovering around Tim Tebow need to take a step back. Take two steps back. You know what, just go away. Leave this kid alone. Don't show up in public with him. (OK, Brothers Tebow seem to be OK. But lose the camera crew, for crying out loud! More on that in a second). For now, no more orphanages or hospital visits. No more speaking engagements at churches or universities or Charlie Crist fundraisers (that last one is just me getting carried away). No more Super Bowl commercials! Seriously, a Super Bowl commercial? About pretty much the most controversial thing in our society? Right during the Super Bowl? Right before the Combine? Right before the Draft? Stupid. Not stupid that Tebow is taking a stand. I congratulate him on that -- Hooray! A high-profile athlete who isn't afraid to share his opinions! -- and hope he's a role model for other athletes. It's just poor timing, in my opinion. Too much pressure. Too much of a distraction. Make that commercial next year.

You know what else is a bit odd? That "documentary" crew that was following around Tebow at the Senior Bowl. The crew has been following Tebow since the end of the Sugar Bowl. You know who is directing this "documentary?" Chase Heavener, the son of Bill Heavener, whose name is on the side of the UF football complex. This is not helping Tebow, guys. It's counterproductive.

But you know what's worse? Bob Tebow allowing ... no, allowing would be the wrong word. You know what's worse? Bob Tebow wanting this "documentary" to be made right now, at this very important time in Tim Tebow's professional career. Bill Heavener is a family friend of the Tebows and yada, yada, yada. He donates plenty of cash to the Bob Tebow Evangelistic (apparently, soon to be Tele-Evangelistic) Association. I understand the obligation to the Heaveners and the opportunity to spread the Tebows' message and help people. That's great. But not right now. Again, let me be perfectly clear about my description of what is happening. A "documentary" crew is following around Tebow like he's some kind of reality-show celebrity. The film team hovered around Tebow the entire time at the Senior Bowl. How can Tebow earn respect from NFL coaches, GMs and players with that nonsense taking place? Tebow is no phony. You remember me writing that at the beginning of this post, right? Tim, here's some advice. No more "documentary" crew, no more favors to friends, no more anything except football until you actually do something in the NFL. Tebow is going to have dozens of media obligations in the coming months. He doesn't need an in-house film crew documenting his every move as he prepares for the NFL.

The Tebows' non-profit organization is a family affair. I get that. It's great that the Bob Tebow Evangelistic Association is benefiting from Tim Tebow's success. It really is and I'm not being sarcastic. Anything to help orphans is great. Make 100 "documentaries" if it's going to help orphans, but for now, the Tebows need to step back and give their son some space to develop professionally. Bob Tebow needs to stop being his son's shadow. He did it for four years at Florida and that's fine, but Tim Tebow is a professional now and needs to be treated like one. Bob Tebow doesn't need to be a part of the story any longer. After all, he's got Tim. But give Tebow some time to himself to improve his game. Let me be clear. The Tebows do great work and the Tebows are great people. The intentions are good and for all the right reasons, but the people close to Tim Tebow need to remove themselves from the process and limit the clutter and distractions at this very important stage in Tim Tebow's professional career.

Of course, these are just my opinions. I could be way off. Being surrounded by a loving family like the Tebows is never a bad thing, of course. I just think Tebow needs to focus all his time and energy into preparing for the Draft. Love to see McShay and Mel Kiper Jr. eat crow the first day of the Draft.

-jo-

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451b26169e20128773579fb970c

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Much too early to write off Tim Tebow:

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Well said Jo.

Go 'canes!

if he coudlnt change at florida, what makes you think he'll change in the nfl. wasnt that the reason why that qb coach was hired; to help him transition.

GO 'canes

Actually, Urban Meyer apparently gave the new QB coach, Scot Loeffler, instructions not to change Tebow. Loeffler told reporters upon his hiring that Meyer told him, "Not to mess up Tebow." Loeffler was hired to replace Dan Mullen and develop Johnny Brantley.

-jo-

really, didnt know that... u do good job of responding with useful information... u and manny.
why did urban ask this of Loeffler

Hit the nail on the head. Nice post Jo.

couldnt agree more... I can't turn on ESPN for more then 5 minutes without hearing someone bashing Tebow... pretty annoying to bash someone before he even plays a damn game.. get off the kid and let him play

The same people at ESPN touting ur most recent class of recruits are the same ones critiquing teabag. So are they wrong about your class or are they wrong about teabag. Be consistent and stop being such a homer.
Playing with equal athletes on both sides of the ball (unlike the GAtor schedule where they were favored by more then 10 points in every game except the Bama game) showed the dude had a hard time taking a snap or hanging on to the ball.
I watched the game did you????
I was feeling rather sad for the dude in being so over matched and how UNPREPARED he was (slow getting back from center, long wind-up, doing 360's to get into passing posistion, couldn't read coverage, under threw, over threw).

Tebow completed 8 of 12 attempts in the Senior Bowl. Three passes were dropped and one was under thrown. That's what happened.

-jo-

what about quarterback mechanics. the kid at USC is excellent...and im not taliking about barkley.

Nice one Joe... Canes suck.... It's going to be interesting were tebow goes.... All I know is that team will be my favorite, and my new tebow jersey will be in the mail

Jo, I think you wrote a good article but I think you overstated your case a few times.

To say that Uche Nwaneri blocks people for a living and therefore cannot judge quarterbacks... that's absurd. I don't think it makes sense to completely dismiss the opinion of someone who plays pro football for a living. Or who scouts pro football for a living. They make mistakes yes but, and I'm being charitable here, so do professional sportswriters. And amateur fans.

And this bit about "Tebow lives for football like no one else" ? Take a step back. You're really telling us that Tim is more committed to football than Peyton Manning? Really? And I could list a few dozen other guys who live the game but I'm hoping you get my point. Yeah, he loves the game, but he's not the only one. This is getting close to the deification of Tebow that rubs so many of us the wrong way.

Ok let's be logical is majority of the NFL just tebow haters? Somewhat possible being that the canes run the mans league; how many record gators played in the 2010 pro bowl? Tebow is a great example of what more kids should be off the field no doubt. He definetly has gone against the grain in an age of reckless imoral pollution that floods the young minds of today student athelete. With the oprah nonsense out of the way let's turn to what deems succes in the NFL, passing the football. Tebow is barley an above average passer, with average accuracy, playing in a system that does not translate to the NFL. A system that makes it easy to gain rushing yards and touchdown from the quarterback position. That gators haven't had a true RB that was good since urban hitler has infected incestville. Face the facts Jgoodman you sound like a bitter ex-girlfriend who stalks her former boyfriend not understanding that it's over. Tim tebow is an average at best NFL QB. Teams have every reason to want his succes think of the money and publicity and Christian fans that team would get. Do you see somthing the proffessional league, million dollar paid ,livelyhood on the line, decisions makers don't???? U want to see somthing that isn't there. This isn't mind freak Cris angel. I accepted it when the NFL said thanks but no thanks to Ken Dorsey who was 38-2 and played in two title games and would hav won a heisman had he won the votes of Willis magahee granted tebow did More than Dorsey but college success does not always breed NFL success that's why the last five years with the U down we still putting out pros Kenny Phillips, Jon beason, Brandon merrywwther, Tavares gooden, Calais cambell NFL starters from bad Miami teams

Goodman,

You are a Good Man.

I am glad you cover the Gators.

Chris,

Those are two throw-away sentences. Take them or leave them, either way. Definitely overstatements, you're right. Good call.

-jo-

Question: Is this Andrew Meyer, the guy who was Tasered during John Kerry's forum at UF?

-jo-

Yes mrs. badgirl, he was 8 for 12, but please give all the stats and don't be like fox(fake) news and cherry-pick what you want your flock of sycophants to hear and know.
Yes he was 8 for 12, but for only 50 yds with the longest pass being 11 yds (just dump offs) and when he did try to go down field, he did 360's after taking the snap, then over or under threw his receivers.
He rushed 4 times for 4yds.
But most important he FUMBLED twice and looked inept out there and over matched.
Like they say the tape doesn't lie.....

Excellent comments ... very thoughtful ... profound even! Hope he's drafted by the Jax Jaguars. And then leads them to the Super Bowl. I can dream, can't I?

Great post Mangood. Didn't realize the scope of the documentary coverage Tebow was getting. That had to be annoying to anyone around it at the Senior Bowl.

Even with the long list of pointed opinions you threw out, I didn't disagree with any of them.

I've developed a refined ability to skip right past these absurd jealous UM commenters.

Shouldn't they still be groveling around in the Orlando mud looking for their jockstraps?

Yes mrs. badgirl, he was 8 for 12, but please give all the stats and don't be like fox(fake) news and cherry-pick what you want your flock of sycophants to hear and know.
Yes he was 8 for 12, but for only 50 yds with the longest pass being 11 yds (just dump offs) and when he did try to go down field, he did 360's after taking the snap, then over or under threw his receivers.
He rushed 4 times for 4yds.
But most important he FUMBLED twice and looked inept out there and over matched.
Like they say the tape doesn't lie.....
Posted by: todd mcshay | February 06, 2010 at 06:49 AM

So you disagree with Goodman and resort to sophomoric name calling? Typical from a jealous immature cane scUM.

What is clear is that you watched every second of every play .

The Gators own your every waking thought "mcshay."

You go to bed thinking about the Gators and you wake up thinking about the gators

LAUDERDALE LAKES, Fla. — As the police have it tallied, Michigan football recruit Demar Dorsey has been involved in at least three burglaries starting in 2007 as a 15-year-old. The cops say Dorsey confessed to at least two of those crimes.
But Dorsey will be able to play college football because he hasn’t been convicted of a crime, thanks to breaks he has gotten from the law. And he says he’s headed to Michigan so he can get away from it all and start anew.
“My goal right now is to show everybody I’m not that person who I was a couple years back then, hanging with the wrong crowd and stuff like that, showing that I’m more focused,” Dorsey said Thursday in an exclusive interview with the Free Press. “I’m focused. I’m ready to move on with my life to bigger and better things.”

Never heard about any of this. Good riddance. He's still rockin grills.

2 the previous poster, get your facts straight. He was a GAtor committ for months until he ran in2 a grade problem.
Would've fit right in with the rest of the thugs at UFelons...

Jo-

for the record, I thought it was overall a good article. I said so in my initial post. I had a couple of nits to pick but hey.

In this blog, amongst all the "scUM/UFelony" nonsense, there have been a lot of thoughtful comments on this and I think it speaks to what a total roll of the dice the NFL draft is. There were people convinced that Ryan Leaf was going to be a Hall Of Famer, Ditto Heath Shuler, Rick Mirer, and I could go on forever. College success is no guarantee, but then again, nothing is. It's fun to speculate, though.

Let me go off topic here - I don't get this business about UM blogs getting filled up with loud mouthed UF fans, and visca versa. I'm a rabid Canes fan and I'll boo the hell out of the Gators when you play us, but other than that, hell, let the Gators show the rest of the nation how football is played in Florida. I feel the same way about FSU, and the "little two" of USF and UCF. Right now the Gators are hot and the Canes not (although a 9-4 record and an ace soph QB isn't bad) but these things run in cycles, always have, always will. Five years from now things will probably be reversed.

"an ace soph QB"

What are you smoking man? Aside from thursday night hype and speedy receivers that run under the moonballs, he's done NOTHING! His downside far outweighs his upside. Sure he threw for a bunch of yards last year. There is an endless list of guys that put up yardage and are average.

Calling a guy who LED THE NATION in interceptions an "ace" is incomprehensible.

Defenses will be much more prepared for him and Whip in 2010.

He's very limited.
cant run
takes sacks
throws picks
average arm strength
injury liability
throws into coverage

An ace QB??????

Although the Tebows obviously love Tim, I feel that they are also exploiting him. Having a camera crew following him around to make some one-sided documentary about him at this stage is ludicrous. If he wants to be part of an NFL team as a rookie, he will need to be modest and earn the respect of his teammates. He's not the first outspoken Christian to play big-time football, nor the first to be outspoken about controversial issues (see Kurt Warner, stem-cell research), and that is all his prerogative. But I agree with you that his parents need to give him some space - they never have, and they never will, and he doesn't know anything different. So it will never change. Bob Tebow reminds me of Joe Simpson in that way - he loves his kid but he's also using him.

" Five years from now things will probably be reversed."

Yeah, Florida, OSO, Texas, and Alabama will all suck.
Miami, Cincinatti, VT, and Louisville will all be dominating.

Get your head out of your azzz bucko. The "these things run in cycles" argument is about as shallow and ignorant as it gets. Money programs are at the top now. That's not changing. You probably haven't noticed that you take buses to games now broke guy. Just how is it that UM is going to join the big boys in the next decade? Lemme guess? JACORY HARRIS !!!! You cane dinosaurs are hilarious

SorkaB,

I wouldn't call it "exploiting" Tebow, just taking advantage of a situation. Exploiting makes it sound like someone is getting hurt in the process. In the end, a non-profit is benefiting from the "exploitation" of soon-to-be millionaire Tim Tebow. I can live with such injustices in this world...

In case anyone was interested, Tebow was in Fort Lauderdale on Friday at the Super Bowl media headquarters. Here's The Herald's version of the account. Tebow has said all this stuff on the blog before but The Herald was the only newspaper to talk with Tebow on Friday, so it's definitely worth a read. Great work by Herald Dolphins writer Jeff Darlington.

http://www.miamiherald.com/sports/colleges/uf/story/1465826.html

Here's a video of the event. It's pretty funny. Check out the Gatorade researcher who momentarily checks out Tebow when he's in his skivies. She'll never live that one down.

Also, great column by the Sun-Sentinel's Dave Hyde.

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/sports/miami-dolphins/fl-hyde-super-bowl-0206-20100205,0,2963898.column

-jo-

It's so funny to me when gator fans refer to Miami succes as ancient when the first four years of THIS DECADE the gators lost to the U in 01-02-03-04 and Miami played in the 05 orange bowl. yes the last five years we hav not been good but be realistic and you call us dinosaurs lol. And the U has plays at at least two title games in each of the last three decades. And as far as jacory Harris goes he played the second half of the season, where moat of his interceptions occurred with A TORN LIGAMENT IN HIS THUMB ON HIS THROWING HAND and SPRAINED SHOULDER. Had Tebow done the samething you guys would have went nutts saying Tebow's toughness is unmatched and his so amazing lol

Seminolesuck thats a good argument.

GO CANES

Good response Three BILLION dollars. Weren't you guys also rolling in the dough when Spurrier and Zook were getting waxed by the Canes earlier in the decade???

Please continue thinking that college football wasn't played before 2006. It reinforces the fact that 99.99% of Gators fans (or atleast 99.99% of the UF fans on this blog) are oblivious.

canes...nice season

One more thing for MC ESCHER:

"I've developed a refined ability to skip right past these absurd jealous UM commenters.

Shouldn't they still be groveling around in the Orlando mud looking for their jockstraps?"

Uh, I don't think that any of these posters actually played in the game, therefore I wouldn't think they would need to look for their jockstraps, unless maybe they partake in WATCHING football a little differently than I.

I don't mean to nitpick, but this kind of post makes me cringe. Keep your digs straight; fans watch/cheer, players play. Or did you think that you watching the Gators over the last 3 years is somewhat responsible for making the players play well???

Let me go off topic here - I don't get this business about UM blogs getting filled up with loud mouthed UF fans, and visca versa. I'm a rabid Canes fan and I'll boo the hell out of the Gators when you play us, but other than that, hell, let the Gators show the rest of the nation how football is played in Florida. I feel the same way about FSU, and the "little two" of USF and UCF. Right now the Gators are hot and the Canes not (although a 9-4 record and an ace soph QB isn't bad) but these things run in cycles, always have, always will. Five years from now things will probably be reversed.

Posted by: chris H | February 06, 2010 at 11:01 AM

finally, a level headed canes fan on this blog. All the comparisons and hate with UM and UF on this blog is sickening to me. I'm a diehard gator, but keep an open and respectful mind and give credit where credit is due. I can't see UM rebuilding much longer either, they will come around sooner than later. And I hope they do, that will just bring football in the state of florida to the level where it belongs!

Tebow has dealt with this type of attention and pressure his whole life. This is normal for him. To leave him alone would not be a normal situation. Tebow's mission is a lot larger than winning some meaningless games ...it's about winning hearts and souls. You cant do that without coverage. And this fame is expiring. You have to hit it while your hot, and the big story is until the draft so until then they are going to play it up. then everybody will want to see how he does. so expect more then as well...

And I hope they do, that will just bring football in the state of florida to the level where it belongs!

Posted by: drapp88 | February 06, 2010 at 04:59 PM

////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

You got that right. I want FSU to come back as well. It's more fun when all the Florida schools are tearing up the nation, and having epic battles with each other. We'll be there soon enough.

Will Tim Tebow Play In The NFL ? It All Depends ...

Picture this scenario. Bill Belichick moves up to take Tebow somewhere in the middle/end of the 2nd. Round... Gives him the opportunity to earn "just" the backup job to Brady. No need to be the savior to a franchise. While he learns the Patriots Offense, and he will quickly, they also install a special Tebow package as a compliment to what the Pats already have. Whether Tebow lines up next to Brady (love to see this kid block), or at Q.B. ala Ronnie Brown, it sure gives the Pats plenty of options (his ability to throw the ball well, but not great is a huge advantage). Not to mention, preparation headaches to opposing Defenses... The guy is a football player and can line up at Q.B., R.B., T.E., Slot or H-Back as a real option or just a decoy. The bottom line is, will Tebow's presence on Ur team make that team better? Especially an already very good team better. That million dollar bonus question will remain to be seen. But I'd have to think having Tebow on Ur team can only make it better.

Now Plan B ... If for some reason, it doesn't work out on Offense, and Tebow is basically a 3rd. team Emergency Q.B. ... You sit his butt down in a film room for weeks, showing him nothing but Tedy Bruschi, Mike Vrabel, Ted Johnson and Junior Seau tape. And simply tell him, "Tim, we really need some depth at L.B. The team needs you, would you be willing to give it a shot?"
I'm positive, being the type of kid he is, the answer would come without hesitation, "Yes Sir, I'd be happy to hit the guy with the ball." ... He couldn't possibly be any worse than Larry Izzo, who was in the league a DOZEN years.

Plan C ... If it all doesn't work out at Q.B., TimCat, T.E., H-Back or a move to L.B. , The Patriots can simply trade him to Jacksonville for the 2nd. round pick they initially drafted him with. (Pat White's trade value anyone ?).

Bottom line, Hoody Bill loves the kid and don't be surprised to see him try to make some sort of move to stick it to Jax. who obviously needs him, but as a pawn...

It's would be sad to see a team just throw this kid into the fire without bringing him along with an established starter on a less than average team.

I personally believe, 10 years from now that Tim Tebow will have a nice NFL pension plan as a role player and the league will be better off as a result.

Your blog is more interesting than ours these days.

He hasn't done a lot of the things required of a pro QB yet. It doesn't mean he can't, but it's going to take a lot of work.

I don't think he can play another position in the league, it's just asking too much of Tebow.

It's QB or bust IMO, so he'd better get to work.

two decades and one ship dats U??
Todd Mcshay is a ESPN analyst for college football, nowhere in any of his posts does he boost up UM or even mention UM, but a little critiqueing of a gator player and U jump on Miami?? Whos in whos head??
And resort to name calling after you bash someone else for doing it??
i live in gainesville and are UM alum, you sir define gator football fan.

The comments to this entry are closed.