Thursday, August 19, 2010

Tebow Fantasy Football Problem

Speaking of fantasy football from earlier today...

I have not one but two fantasy football drafts today. The running joke among my league members is how early am I going to reach for Tim Tebow.

Based on data from "Average Draft Position" -- the average spot a player is taken in thousands of drafts being tracked -- I will not have to reach very far.

The ADP charts I have seen have Tebow listed close to the 300th overall pick -- in far more leagues, he is going undrafted than being drafted.

(In the fantasy football preview magazine, they didn't even have an entry for Tebow -- he didn't "qualify," given their prediction of where he would be drafted... or undrafted, I guess.)

Here is the quandary:

It is unlikely that Tebow will have a fantasy impact at QB -- at least until he becomes a starter, which could happen at Week 10 (or not at all).

Now, that's not to say that Tebow won't rack up fantasy points as early as Week 1: If he scores a TD or two in Jacksonville, that is real fantasy value.

Except for the QB slot, where it can't compete on points with a typical 10-, 12- or 14-team league starting QB that will account for multiple TDs plus 200-300 yards passing.

That is why I made the suggestion a few months ago that one of the leading services -- Yahoo, or -- qualify Tebow as a QB... and an RB... and a TE.

Consider the TD that Tebow scored on Sunday night: He performed much more like a running back than a quarterback.

There's still that problem: Even with 5-6 plays from the QB position where Tebow acts like a RB as much as a QB -- even if he scores on 1 or 2 of those plays (per game? can you imagine?) -- no fantasy GM would start him over a full-time RB that will get 15-20 carries per game, with a lot more chances to score TDs.

And that's why I throw in the TE designation, even though Tebow won't play TE and is unlikely to catch any passes, even if he lines up in a single-wing strategy.

If Tebow really can score anywhere from 7-10 TDs this season -- that's only 1 goal-line plunge every 2 games -- that makes him every bit as points-valuable as a 2nd- or 3rd-tier fantasy TE.

I pinged a friend who is part of the Yahoo! fantasy brain-trust about the idea, including in my sell that Yahoo would get a TON of publicity for making Tebow more fantasy-friendly.

He found the idea intriguing, but ultimately a tough sell internally.

I tried to remind him that when Marques Colston was accidentally listed as a TE a few years ago, Colston became a fantasy legend in a way he never could have had he been accurately listed as a WR.

I think there are a lot of folks out there who WANT to draft Tim Tebow on their teams. The major fantasy league sites don't do the fans -- or the game -- any favors by artificially limiting Tebow this season.

Yes, it's an exception. But it's an entirely fun idea -- and I wouldn't be surprised if Tebow started showing up in lots of starting lineups as a TE, especially once he starts scoring TDs.

Do it, Yahoo. Do it, ESPN. Do it, CBS. Who will be the one to get the headlines for giving Tim Tebow the unprecedented QB/RB/TE eligibility?


  1. Yes, do it Yahoo--and hurry, my draft is in a week!

  2. Why stop at TE? Let's demand Tebow be listed as a K. Or a DEF. I mean, if you're throwing away the basic rules of football in order to accomodate a player, go all out!!!

    If you're going to have ANY luck whatsoever, you're better off changing your league rules to specifically play a Wildcat-hybrid type player every year. That way you not only bring added value to Tebow, you reinvigorate interest in Michael Vick not to mention players like Josh Cribbs, Dexter McCluster, Antwann Randle El, Darren McFadden, etc.