No, I have never met Tim Tebow. By all accounts he seems like a perfectly pleasant young man with a perfectly American haircut and first name. But I don't like him as a football player. Not when he was charging down the field for Florida. Not when he won the damn Heisman Trophy. Not when he talked about Jesus all the time and not when he came into the NFL. And certainly not this week when damn near every sports columnist all but demanded I accept him as football royalty.
In fact, this summer when there were rumors that Tebow had fallen as far as four on the Bronco's depth chart, I felt a sort of validation. See, I told myself, I knew this guy was all hype. I knew he wouldn't last in the NFL and that Heisman was just a reward for being the quarterback of the SEC champion, which is essentially what the Heisman Trophy has become. I figured people would give up on him. Success, I thought.
But then - and maybe it was a reward for all the free PR work he did for the big guy - Tebow somehow found himself getting some snaps over the course of the past two weeks. And it wasn't because he's clearly better than Kyle Orton or Brady Quinn, but rather because he sold a lot of jerseys and those oxygen-deprived Denveranians took to moronically chanting "Tee-bow, Tee-bow" after each of Orton's incomplete passes.
My good friend is a Broncos fan. He's never lived in Denver and doesn't even have family in Colorado, but he's a Broncos fan because of John Elway. He loved/still loves Elway so much, that more than a decade after Elway threw his last pass for the boys in orange, my buddy has a goddman Broncos logo on his debit card. This, I think, is why people like Tim Tebow. They want another Elway. Another seemingly wholesome young white man with an impeccable personal life and a cannon for an arm.
But Tebow, you see, is only one of those things. He's just a nice guy, OK? And that's great. I'd probably love to have a beer, um, talk about girls, or watch an R-rated movie, ummmm... play Candyland with him. That doesn't make him a great quarterback. I mean, his performance on Sunday's impossibly bizarre win over the Dolphins (who, by the way, have yet to win a game all season) was dreadful for almost the entire game. The first half featured some Ryan Leaf-caliber awfulness. Then, the Broncos managed to score and then somehow get an onside kick with just a couple minutes to go. In overtime, they won the damn game.
The media's account of the game, however, went something like this:
MIAMI (AP) - After leaping into the clouds to high-five Jesus, a close personal friend and business partner, Denver quarterback Tim Tebow descended onto the field in Miami to grab the ball and score 18 points all by himself. Tebow took matters into his own hands by the end of the second half, and we don't really remember what happened before that. It goes without saying that Tim Tebow, with his 240 passing yards on the season, is indisputably the greatest quarterback in the game.
"What can I say? I guess nice guys do finish first," said the gorgeous Tebow, a twinkle in his eye as he smiled a heart-melting smile to the mass of cooing reporters assembled in the team's locker room after the shocking overtime win.
That's more or less how most sports pundits (spundits?) interpreted Sunday's game. But where is the talk about Cam Newton's impressive rookie year? You can't hear it because it's being drowned out by the gaggle of idiots who've fallen under the twinkly-eyed spell of Tebow.
I just don't get it. This guy is not that good. And I really don't like him.