Remember the intrigue last year on the day of the first round of the NFL Draft? It was led by this simple question: Where is Tim Tebow going?
There were plenty of contenders: Bills? Jaguars? Patriots? My pick was the Vikings. It ended up being the Broncos, and in hindsight it all seemed so obvious.
A year later, it is clear that Tebow can be a starting QB in the NFL -- he proved that as a rookie, against all the nay-sayers.
The irony is that if the Bills had taken Tebow last year instead of rookie non-factor CJ Spiller, they would be entering the 2011 season with a talented QB with a year of starts under his belt and probably a similar draft slot, where they could have grabbed any number of super-talents: Von Miller, Marcell Dareus. Even a game-breaker like AJ Green.
The Jaguars could have used the instant injection of fan enthusiasm Tebow brought to Denver.
And as the rumors swirl that they are ready to use the No. 12 overall pick on Jake Locker, the Vikings could have had Tebow in the 20s a year ago, then used the No. 12 pick on their other needs, knowing they were set at QB (even as Tebow sat behind Brett Favre for his rookie year). Locker feels like "Tebow Lite." At best, Locker is nothing better than a year behind where Tebow would have been now had he gone to Minnesota.
But mostly, I remember this day a year ago for the excitement I and a lot of you felt when Tebow was drafted in the 1st round, just like we all had insisted for years -- Tebow is a first-round NFL talent -- and directly in the face of the draftnik haters who insisted he could NEVER be a first-rounder.
There was a satisfaction there that I think is worth remembering, no matter what happened in the year since.