Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Tim Tebow

My buddy, Steve-O, is no great football fan, but he does love to socialize and is happy to do so on Sunday mornings while watching football with Yours Truly and others. And since he's gregarious and a kind of "go with the flow" type...and as susceptible to mob rule and passion as anyone...I've turned him into a Seahawk watcher over the last few years.

Actually, Steve was (at one point) more of a football fan than myself, insomuch as he went to a Division I school, while my alma mater had no football team at all. Being a former WSU Cougar, you'd think he'd get all excited when Fall rolls around, but as with many former Cougars, he spent most of his five or six years in Pullman skipping class and partying like a rock star and doesn't remember much more than a deep abiding hatred for the Huskies. Oh, yeah...and Ryan Leaf. Steve-O was the same class and, boy, has he got some stories about that guy.

Anyway, recently Steve (who really is not much of a football fan, college or otherwise) has become smitten with Tim Tebow and the whole mystique surrounding the polarizing quarterback. Me, I could give a rats ass about young Tim's politics (I was and am a Hasselbeck fan and he is just about as dyed-in-the-wool Republican as they come...barf). For myself, I'm following the whole Broncos-Tebow story because I keep waiting for Denver to go down in flames. Sorry, old habits die hard and as a lifelong (since '73) Seattleite, I will probably carry a special loathing for all things Orange for the rest of my days.

And yet, Tebow continues to win despite being...well, is inept too strong a word? I mean, there is a certain idea about the role of the quarterback in the National Football League, and Tebow ain't it. Sorry, running backs are supposed to run, receivers are supposed to catch, etc. Young Tim ain't living up to the billing of a starting QB by anyone's stretch of the imagination.

So, yeah, "inept." And yet he continues to win...3 of his last 4 games. I find myself hoping that he will lead the Broncos past the implosive Chargers and Chiefs as well as the cast-off Raiders and into the AFC playoffs. Not because I like Denver (as I said, I don't) and not because I like to root for an "underdog" (I don't like that either).

What I DO like is people who can "shake things up" and throw off the expectations and perceptions of others. Like when the Seahawks blow up the Giants or the Ravens when everyone expects 'em to tank (including me). It's not that Tebow's detractors are wrong...he IS a terrible quarterback relative to the caliber of NFL starting QBs (including Seattle's own terrible, terrible passers). The detractors are right, he's terrible...but he is turning the league on its ear when it comes to showing what one needs to win in the League. Maybe you don't need an Aaron Rodgers or Tom Brady. Maybe you can win with a guy who completes two passes in a game...even though the starting two running backs are injured.

I wouldn't call it inspiring, exactly. But it makes me glad to know that some people can still, through their very actions and effort of being true to themselves, give all those set-in-stone presumptions a big middle finger.

For a guy who writes pen-and-paper RPGs in a world of increasingly complex video games, there's a lesson there.

Anyway, Steve-O called me twice today, which is very unusual. His first cal was to find a fried chicken place in Greenwood; his 2nd was to to tell me Thursday was Tim Tebow day. I had to remind him that I do NOT get the NFL cable package, so the game won't be on at my house AND ALSO remind him that Thursday is gaming night.

Of course, Cafe Mox does get the NFL cable package, so Tebow will be playing on their TV screens. Perhaps, that will be enough enticement to get Steve to come help me playtest the space opera game this week.
; )


  1. As someone who grew up during the Elway era, I bleed orange. As a Christian, I have got to respect Tebow for walking the walk. As a Blood Bowl kinda guy, I gotta love how Denver has so much embraced being a Dwarven team. But the one thing that drives me nuts is that Tebow is even considered a polarizing figure.

    He is, as you say, a rather pathetic QB (by NFL standards) on a pathetic team in a pathic division. Why spill so much proverbial ink on the guy? Frankly, I think the sports journalist elite find the guy a threat to their world view. He is a devout Christian. He is pro-life (and an abortion that, according to pro-choice advocates, should have happened) and he succeeds despite failing to fit the mold. Therefore, they are trying to will Tebow to fail and, in the process, bully the rest of us into doing the same. Like you, even if I weren't a Bronco fan, I hope he continues to succeed so that the sports world IS turned on its ear.

  2. @ Fr.Dave: Yeah, that's pretty much what I'm talking about.
    : )

  3. tl/dr: Give him some time to grow in to the NFL; he was a dominant college football player

    Long version:
    I think "inept" is too harsh, but I'm only familiar with his college career in the SEC. To be fair, I can't stand the guy personally (not just because he played for FL), but I would describe him as "dominant" in the most competitive conference in NCAA football. I know, I know... it's not the NFL, but you can't just handwave his college career out of existence.

    Some highlights:
    Rushed and passed for a TD in every game of the 2007 season which ended in a bowl game (lost). Same for 2008, except they won the championship that year.

    Won the frickin' Heisman Trophy in 2007 (his sophomore year). He was also 3rd place for the Heisman in 2008.

    MVP in the NCAA Championship game in 2008.

    Wm V. Campbell Trophy in 2009 (so-called Academic Heisman)

    Academic All-American 2007-2009 - 3.3 minimum GPA (although his major was Family, Youth and Community Sciences... come on)

    He's listed on the Broncos roster as 6'3 and 235 lbs. That's one large QB :)

    First 4 years QB rating:
    Joe Montana: 81.1 87.8 88.4 88.0
    Dan Marino: 96.0 108.9 84.1 92.5
    Tom Brady: 42.4 86.5 85.7 85.9
    Brett Favre: 85.3 72.2 90.7 99.5
    Tim Tebow: 82.1 81.7 ?? ??
    Matt Hasselbeck: 77.5 86.3 70.9 87.8

    With a QB rating of 82ish, I think that you are setting the "inept" bar pretty high.

    Like almost all professional sports players, though, I wish he would keep his mouth shut. We don't buy tickets to games because we care about the players lives... if we did, we probably wouldn't have them out there ruining their bodies for our entertainment.

    That ran a bit longer than intended :)