Keep in mind they're just the opinions of some guy with a keyboard and internet access. I'm not a football coach. I'm not a football player. I'm not a football talent scout. But I've been a fan of the Denver Broncos since I could sit still (sort of still) long enough to watch games in my grandma's living room. I get the Broncos making what could possibly be the biggest free agent acquisition ever. Peyton Manning is a great quarterback. I get it. Any other year since John Elway retired, I would have been ecstatic to see Peyton Manning in a Broncos uniform.
But something changed last year for this team. This was only from the outside looking in, but it looked like the team had something they'd been missing since about 1998. It looked like they had heart. And it showed up the day Tim Tebow stepped into the game. They still had boneheaded breakdowns and suspect holes in certain areas - but the team was different. The Broncos were exciting to watch again. Most of the games had an excitement level to them that hadn't been around since Helicopter #7 flew over the Packers.
It is undeniable that Tim Tebow was a huge factor in bringing that excitement. I suppose, technically, some idiot could deny it, but hey... we were all watching and it was obvious. This smaller market team was the talk of the football nation again. Jerseys were selling, seats were full, and fans were screaming. But I think that's where the wheels fell off.
I think the Broncos have made a mistake trading away Tim Tebow. I know, for his sake, he's probably better off with a chance to compete for the starting job. I know, he would not have that opportunity with Peyton Manning in town. But I also think he's a strong enough person to override his own ego and wait. I think John Fox is a creative enough coach to get them both on the field. (Could you imagine a backfield with Manning and Tebow both a few yards behind center? No defense could game plan for that!) I think it could have worked.
But again, I'm just some guy with a keyboard, what do I know?
I know Denver gave up a great player for a 4th round draft pick. Can you name me a 4th round draft pick that's had a bigger impact in Denver in the last decade than Tim Tebow had last season? (Dumervil from 2006 is the only 1 I can come up with.) If that's all they were going to get, they should have just kept him. He's a big boy and would've handled not being the starter for a while, just like he did at Florida as a freshman. So... quick recap:
- 1-4 record
- Replace Orton with Tebow
- 7-4 in the remaining 11 games
- Win a playoff game for the first time in WAY too long
- National media
- Tickets selling
- Jerseys selling
So why get rid of the guy who was the catalyst for so much of that?
There are a lot of people mad a John Elway, saying he just wanted to get rid of Tebow out of some kind of QB jealousy he just couldn't manage. That's just stupid. If that was the case, they would have just kept Orton or some other undeniably sub-Elway player. They would definitely not have gone out and pulled out $96 million to get one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever put on a helmet (which is exactly what Manning is)!
They didn't get rid of him for cost reasons either. Lots of teams will pay their backup QB's much more than what Tebow would have been paid.
I think it boils down to the crazy level of insanity brought on by a small core of incredibly stupid and vocal Tebow fans. Don't get me wrong, I am a Tebow fan. I hope he enjoys
NY wherever he ends up and rolls over that part of the NFL. I love watching him play and will continue to follow his career. But there is a section of - lets not call them fans anymore, lets call them worshipers because that's what they really are (and also the last thing Tebow would ever want) - who have thrown out every scrap of logic and football sense who would make life miserable for any team that would leave Tebow on a bench for a while. He's an awesome man of great faith, who is inspiring to watch. I can only imagine that playing as a teammate would be even more inspiring. But that doesn't make him a better quarterback than Peyton Manning.
I wonder if the fans who are most outraged at the Broncos need to look a little closer to home... No front office or coaching staff with any sense of sanity wants to deal with the crazy level of mania brought around by those who think Tebow is football Jesus. You got him traded. Jerks. Judas-es. After a revolving door that started turning behind center the day Elway retired, we could have had one of the best quarterbacks of the last 15 years AND one of the best of the next 15 years. Sorry... I'm a little cranky.
Have a nice day.