Monday, September 13, 2010

Tim Tebow's Real Broncos Debut

"Dud debut if ever there was one." That's not me -- that's the evaluation of SI's Peter King, who had been bullish on Tebow since the summer.

I think King doesn't mean Tebow was a dud, specifically, as much as the way he (and I and lots of other people) thought Broncos coach Josh McDaniels would use Tebow more aggressively.

It wasn't about Tebow playing in Jacksonville, so the Broncos should play him -- it was that Tebow offers an innovative coach the strategic opportunities to produce productive gains.

When Tebow got the ball on the third Broncos offensive play of the game, it looked promising, even if the run itself was for just a yard.

Tebow later was inserted again for a QB keeper: Again, just a single yard. And that was the extent of Tebow's productivity -- and McDaniels' originality.

I think Woody Paige saw it right: With less than 5 minutes to go, with the Broncos down a TD and sitting on the Jags' 14-yard-line on a make-or-break 4th-and-3, it should have been "Tebow Time."

It is sheer speculation -- even delusion -- but does anyone else think that in his first-ever NFL game, in front of a "home" crowd in a stadium he has basically destroyed teams in for four years, Tebow doesn't create either a 1st-down or a touchdown?

Instead, the play call from Orton to Lloyd fell incomplete -- close, but ultimately a failure -- and the Broncos went on to lose the game.

Tebow spoke briefly with reporters after the game: "Obviously I’m competitive and I love playing in games. So I love being out there, but for me right now, I’ve just got to learn and try to improve every day."

For me, the disappointment -- the "dud," in King's words -- was that given this opportunity to innovatively take advantage of Tebow (and why else did McDaniels draft him?), McDaniels passed.

Obviously, if he puts in Tebow and he falls short, McDaniels would have been crucified. But at least he could have said "I won't apologize for trying something unorthodox to try to tie or win the game." Instead, McDaniels was risky in the wrong way, and it didn't work out.

Hopefully the lesson is that for a non-playoff team like the Broncos, there is very little downside to innovation. And hopefully next time, McDaniels gives more consideration to Tebow Time.

9 comments:

  1. It was the first game of the season. Stop freaking out.

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  2. The Jags used Tebow...but in a very distasteful and tacky way before the game. See below:

    http://www.tebowseyeblack.com/2010/09/personal-foul-jaguars-15-yards.html

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  3. I thought he'd get in more situations as well, but I think it's good if they bring him along slowly. He'll eventually be given those opportunities (especially if Orton continues to miss on those opportunities) so I'm not worried.

    I also liked this article by Jason Cole: http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news;_ylt=AqNLOIGT6wYI8fzOCD4R.2pDubYF?slug=jc-broncosqbs091210

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  4. The Jaguars disrespected Tim Tebow with their tasteless pre-game antics and I hated it. I will not watch another Jaguars game and boldly predict another dismal season for them.

    I was a little disappointed Tim was not able to contribute more to the Broncos game, but I am sure he will get his chance in their future games.

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  5. Belinda, what did the Jaguars do that was tasteless? Almost don't know if I want to know..

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  6. The Jaguars' mascot kicked around a guy in a Tebow jersey and then dragged him off the field. Later in the game the Jags' mascot shoved a cake in #15's face.

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  7. Here's a link to the NYT blog.
    http://fifthdown.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/14/beating-up-on-tebow-in-jacksonville/

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  8. Good thing Tebow is above all that crap. I still can't believe they did that...and with all those young fans there. Pretty pathetic.

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