I may be wrong, but I can’t recall a time in Denver Bronco history when a player caused more media speculation and opinionated rants than Tim Tebow has the last few weeks.
Of course, when John Elway became a Bronco in 1983, he was given the keys to the orange and blue Ferrari and was expected to drive it all the way to the Super Bowl. Eventually, Elway and the Broncos did win Super Bowls. However, the Denver Bronco machine now has more miles on it, and to be honest, hasn’t been well maintained since then. Since Elway’s retirement, many players have been given an opportunity to be the Broncos’ starting quarterback. The players – Brian Griese, Jake Plummer, Jay Cutler, and most recently, Kyle Orton, have provided exciting moments; at the same time, regardless of the reason, they have not lead the team in a way that has restored the greatness the Broncos demonstrated in the mid to late nineties.
The firing of Mike Shanahan in 2008 initiated a chain of events that have caused a lot of Bronco fans to experience the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. Josh McDaniels was chosen by Pat Bowlen to replace Shanahan, and ultimately, it was McDaniels who decided to make Tim Tebow part of the Bronco family. It was apparent Tebow’s collegiate popularity followed him right to the NFL when his Bronco jersey was the best selling rookie jersey on NFL.com in April of 2010. Unfortunately, the Broncos have been in somewhat of a tailspin since then; ultimately, leading to one of their worst seasons in team history and followed by the termination of McDaniels. Despite a short tenure with the Broncos, McDaniels made a lot of decisions and put many things in motion that are now being dealt with by new coach, John Fox.
One of the most newsworthy issues seems to be the quarterback position, and who will fill it. Even though Fox has announced Kyle Orton will be the starter for the 2011 opener against the Oakland Raiders on September 12th, it doesn’t answer the long term Tebow questions, nor has it stopped ex-NFL players, now turned “expert analysts,” from sharing their opinion with the football world. Bashing Tebow appears to be the flavor of the month, but it is nice to see people who are willing to support Mr. Tebow starting to speak up and share their opinion. Regardless of the situation, regardless of the person, there are pros and cons to everything. I am glad the “Tebow pros” are starting to surface.
Will Tebow be the Bronco quarterback of the future? Will Tebow be a starting NFL quarterback? At this point in Tebow’s young career, there are more questions than answers. Right now, according to the football world’s view, the young quarterback’s career is basically in the hands of John Fox and John Elway. Tim Tebow would probably tell you that even though his path in Denver, Colorado is not entirely clear, his path in this world is known by God, and that is the most important one to follow.
I hope Fox and Elway cautiously consider their next move regarding Tim Tebow – the impact it will have on the field, as well as the impact it will have on the Bronco business. This past year, much more than years past, we’re reminded how much of a business the sport of professional football really is.
Tonight the Broncos play their third preseason game of the 2011 season and Tim Tebow, hopefully, will see more playing time than he did against the Buffalo Bills one week ago. If that is the case, Tebow needs to seize the moment and prove he is a football player who can play at the professional level in this league. Depending on decisions John Fox and John Elway make in the near future, this may be Tebow’s opportunity to prove himself to them, or dare I say it, it may be Tebow showcasing his talent for other teams in the league who desire to have a talented football player on their team; one who is a leader, competitive, passionate about the sport, and willing to help a team however he can.
Regardless of how the quarterback situation changes in Denver over the next couple of seasons, I will relish the fact that right now the Broncos are getting national publicity – on television, radio, and the internet. Much of that, as mentioned earlier, shows Tebow’s popularity and how newsworthy the 2011 Denver Bronco quarterback topic is. I find it hard to type these words, but I guess a “thank you” needs to be sent to former Bronco coach Josh McDaniels for at least bringing that to the Denver Broncos.