Friday, April 16, 2010

NFL Tebow: McShay Still Bearish

Todd McShay offers his last word on Tim Tebow:

"I still would not draft him in the first two rounds. It’s a philosophical approach I have."

McShay has banked his young career on being bearish on Tebow's draft prospects. But he wants to have it both ways, because McShay says he personally grades Tebow as a 3rd-rounder, but also wouldn't be surprised to see him taken in the 2nd round.

My main gripe with McShay's analysis is that he frames his evaluation of Tebow on McShay's own personal "philosophical approach."

I'm not sure that's relevant to the discussion at hand. Shouldn't he be thinking about Tebow's draft prospects from the perspective of each team's particular set of needs and interests?

(For example: The Vikings don't need a QB to contribute in 2010, possibly even 2011. But they do need to start developing a QB for beyond that. If they like Tebow's potential as an eventual starter, why wouldn't he at least be in the realm of possibility for them to pick? Teams would never draft a QB based on his Year 1 potential, rather than his Year 3-10 potential. See below.)

At some point, McShay stopped dumping on Tebow because the blowback was undermining McShay's credibility. He remains bearish, and it has earned him a lot of attention.

This is a slippery slope for any sports pundit to offer up, but I'd be curious if McShay would be willing to be a year's salary against Tim Tebow going in the 1st round.

One point I've been trying to make over the past few weeks is that the drafnik's personal grade (or "philosophy") is irrelevant to the question of where a player is going to get picked.

Just because McShay wouldn't take Tebow in the 1st round doesn't mean that there isn't a team (or multiple teams) who wouldn't take Tebow in the 1st round.

There is another weird logical inconsistency in McShay's evaluation:

He contends that 1st-round picks should be able to contribute right away. Even QBs? So McShay would not have taken Steve McNair. Or Eli Manning. Or Phil Rivers. Or Carson Palmer. Or Aaron Rodgers. Or any number of QBs that -- by the very nature of their position -- can't contribute right away.

Now, if McShay said that he would never take a QB in the 1st round, I'd actually understand that "philosophy."

But if he is spending seemingly half his air time doubting Tebow, he is spending the other half of it lauding Sam Bradford as the top talent in the draft. Yet even Sam Bradford is ready to step in and perform at a playoff-QB level in the NFL now.

It's all just an odd inconsistency in McShay's logic, which makes me think that his bearish -- yet constantly hedging -- opinion of Tebow is at least as much about McShay marketing as analysis.

If this really is McShay's last public comments about Tebow until the draft, hopefully this is my last post about McShay until the draft, too....


  1. Yeah. What you said.

    I love Tebow, and I want to see him do really well -- not only for himself, because he's a great guy, but to prove people like McShay wrong.

    And, Tebow is a winner ... so I think it will happen. :)

  2. It will be interesting to see how his "philosophy" changes when he is proven wrong on draft day...and I agree with you if people wanted his opinions, rather than an objective discussion of each team and their needs, we could all get on TV and tout our own "philosophies" with absolutely nothing to back it up. I'll share one of my husband's favorite--"Opinions are like butts, everybody has one, some just stink more than others." Enjoy your 5 minutes, McShay...

  3. It also seems that McShay is trying to talk teams into NOT drafting Tebow.. because then his knocks on Tebow will seem accurate.

    This is the real source of McShay's "personal philosophy" IMO. McShay is trying to plant the seed of doubt in these GMs heads. Scare them into passing on Tebow.

    If Tebow is drafted in the top of the first round then it proves McShay doesn't know what he is talking about. And this is the key to all these scouts that have an irrational stance on Tebow. I think Tebow has proved so many doubters so wrong over his entire career that it stings for fans and experts alike. I guarantee you these guys thought guys they loved talent=wise like Bradford and Stafford would wipe up the field with Tebow.. but it never happened and you know that had to sting. They keep praying that eventually Tebow will tank to resolve their cognitive dissonance.

  4. "McShay has banked his young career on being bearish on Tebow's draft prospects. "

    I actually think that he's banked his young career more on his placement and thoughts of Clausen than Tebow.

    You've admitted countless times how unpredictable Tebows draft position really is, so even if he is taken very high in the draft it really won't do much to prove McShay wrong... in fact McShay is, unfortunately, in a pretty comfortable position. Really the only way for him to look like an idiot here is if Tebow is drafted high and contributes pretty quickly. Otherwise he always will have an out, as he has said that he thinks that Tebow has the drive and is teachable, just that he's a risk.

    However, with clausen he's sticking his neck out there a lot more, in my opinion. Because he may contribute pretty quickly, will likely go much higher than his "38th best prospect" McShay ranking, and more people will remember his stance on that because ESPN has made such a big deal out of it.

    Just my two cents on the situation.


    Check out this article. The last paragraph caught my attention when Tim Tebow revealed Urban Meyer and some FL coaches wanted to attend the NFL draft ceremony . Is it a clue that he will be attending the NFL draft in NYC and will drafted in the 1st Rd?

  6. Thank you for posting that link, Belinda. It looks like he'll have quite a huge group of people w/him if he does go.

  7. Not very siprisingly, Todd McShay turned out to be way off the mark. Tebow went in the first-round to the Denver Broncos. I think he'll do well there, McDaniels should be able to teach him for a year or two and then he'll come out to prove all the doubters wrong.