It is a day for a little Tebow triumphalism.
So many doubted that Tim Tebow would be -- or could be -- a 1st-round NFL Draft pick. Settled.
In fact, the most prescient analysis on the day of the draft came from the group of Tebow fans on Twitter who were contributing to the #timtebowcant topic. It was a quick-hit history lesson on all of the things over the years that critics said Tebow "can't" do.
But rather than triumphalism, I want to talk about exceptionalism, because I think that is the phenomenon that best describes Tebow.
Here's what I mean by "exceptionalism":
Virtually everything related to Tebow proves to be an exception to what many (even most) seem to feel are conventional expectations, which -- in the end -- simply don't apply to Tebow.
We see it over and over. The media delivers some pronouncement of Tebow's limitations -- ironically, based somewhat fairly on what they have seen before, from other athletes -- only to have Tebow exceed them. It's not necessarily the media's fault; there is simply no template for Tebow.
It is why he is the greatest college football player of all time -- there has never been the same combination of winning, statistical dominance and mythos.
It is why he turned out to be a 1st-round pick when most everyone told us he wouldn't/couldn't be.
And, to the point of this week's transition to the next phase of Tebow's life, it is why Tebow will succeed in the NFL as a quarterback. Tebow exceptionalism has been proven and re-proven.
Consequently, at some point, the endlessly recycled doubt should transform into benefit-of-the-doubt. The default should be that he will succeed, if only because he has never NOT succeeded.
To his NFL future specifically: What in Tebow's history makes you think that a combination of his own ethic plus a context conducive to his success -- namely, a QB guru of a coach who comes from the same Belichickean school that Tebow himself was developed in -- won't give him not just the best chance at succeeding, but the simple yet profound expectation that he will succeed.
(To that point: Just look at the initial quotes from Tebow about how devoted he already is to McDaniels and the Broncos and to working hard and to winning. And McDaniels reciprocated; he has his perfect disciple. And Meyer confirms it, a triangulation that indicates an ideal foundation for success.)
Tebow is going to contribute immediately to the Broncos. McDaniels implied as much, and if he is the Xs-and-Os mind he thinks he is, he will evolve the Wildcat to fit Tebow's unique abilities and deploy him in crucial short-yardage and goal-line situations throughout every game.
But more importantly for Tebow's legacy as an NFL player -- when today's triumphalism is long-buried under a resume of Sunday results -- he must develop into a starting -- even starring -- NFL quarterback for the Broncos.
To suggest that Tebow can't or won't become that starting/starring NFL QB -- particularly under these most ideal conditions -- is to ignore Tebow's legacy of exceptionalism. His unique history is not merely of succeeding, but of exceeding.
From high school through college through this pre-draft scrum, on the field and off of it, he has defied expectation and convention -- and proven time and again that he is an exception.
So when "everyone" insists that Tebow can't be a starting NFL quarterback for the Broncos, that Tebow can't succeed in the NFL -- let alone succeed wildly -- I merely direct them to the simple reality of Tebow's own history. Given that, it would be the diametrically incorrect conclusion to doubt him.
Instead of presuming his failure then expressing shock at his success, presume his success -- and be shocked only if he doesn't reach it (not without precedent).
But every sign points to his success. Exceptional success.
More updates through the weekend as merited, but otherwise, please come back next week for an important update on the future of TimTeblog.com.