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Dec 22, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) attempts a pass during the first quarter against the Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Don't Pine For The Past, Enjoy the Present Greatness

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Somewhat recently, the Denver Broncos had one of the most exciting seasons in NFL history, full of ups and downs and miracle wins. The team didn’t have the most talent in the NFL. But that team had something that many players don’t, heart and a desire to put up a W instead of personal gain.


By now you may have guessed I am talking about the 2011 Denver Broncos. Everyone knows all about the team. They were led by one Tim Tebow. Who, while he wasn’t the best quarterback, was a baller. His drive, heart and desire were second-to-none, despite all that, he had one major flaw. He wasn’t an NFL QB.


Yes, he led a comeback in multiple games. But when you look at what the other components of the team did in those games, you have the proof that football is a team sport.



In Tebow’s first game starting in 2011, he managed to lead a 15 point comeback to tie the game. However, the Broncos defense kept the score somewhat reasonable, allowing the Miami Dolphins to score only 15 points. Then later, in overtime, the defense stepped up, forced a fumble and four plays later Broncos kicker Matt Prater nails a field goal giving the Broncos the victory.


Every game looks similar to that. Tebow played his part, but without the defense keeping the score low or Prater being clutch, a lot of those victories would have been losses. When the defense allowed more than 20 points, the Broncos were 2-3 while Tebow was leading the team. One of those wins, against the Minnesota Vikings, saw the offense bailed out by a big time play at a key moment by the defense with an André Goodman interception, shortly followed by a Matt Prater game winning field goal. The other victory came against the Oakland Raiders, who were a big mess from top to bottom at the time.


In the final three games of the season, the Broncos lost all three, 41-23, 40-14, 7-3. That’s right, even when the defense managed to keep the Kansas City Chiefs, led by former Broncos QB Kyle Orton, to 7 points, Tebow could not lead the team to put up more than 3. During the three-game losing streak, Tebow managed to put up only one touchdown through the air, while tossing three interceptions. He actually managed to throw the same amount of touchdowns to the other team, as he did his own team!


Despite those three loses, the Broncos still managed to win their division and make the playoffs. In wild card weekend the Broncos took on the Pittsburgh Steelers. It was an exciting game where the whole team was firing on all cylinders at the start, only to stutter and end up tied at the end of regulation and the rest is in the history books. The Broncos got the ball and on the first play. Tebow takes the snap- throws it, a little low and behind, to Demaryius Thomas, who after a stiff arm took it 80 yards to win the game. The next week, miracle season ended with a 45-10 stomping from the New England Patriots, who weeks before, put up a 41-23 stomping.


One great thing about Tim Tebow was, he instilled a fire into the team that kept them fighting, but without the QB prowess to back up the drive and carry the team. So John Elway went looking for a new QB. Boy did he find one. Peyton Manning. Though the neck injury was worrisome, you never doubt the Duke.


Jan 19, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos executive vice president of football operations John Elway celebrate after the 2013 AFC championship playoff football game against the New England Patriots at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY SportsOne great thing about Tim Tebow was, he installed a fire into the team that kept them fighting, but without the QB prowess to backup the drive and carry the team. So John Elway went looking for a new QB. Boy did he find one. Peyton Manning. Though the neck injury was worrisome, you never doubt the Duke.

Since then, Peyton Manning has led the Broncos to back-to-back 13-3 records, first seed in the AFC, third straight AFC West division champs and a Super Bowl appearance, though some will argue that the Broncos didn’t really show up.


Tebow led the Broncos to some records, but Manning’s 2013 campaign was filled with nothing but records, not just for himself, but the team as well. NFL and Broncos records fell game after game with Manning under center.


Going from Tebow to Manning is like eating at a fast food joint, to eating at a Michelin star restaurant. Drinking boxed wine, to drinking Cune Rioja Imperial Gran Reserva vintage 2004 (one of the best wines in the world). From liking Star Trek to Star Wars. From being a Raiders fan to a Broncos fan. Peyton Manning is just better quality than Tim Tebow.


The point of all this is, not for us to forget what Tebow did for the Broncos, but to put it in the past and enjoy what the Denver Broncos have right now with Peyton Manning. 2011 was an exciting season, but 2013 was even more so.


When you have greatness there before you, you take the time to sit back and watch it unfold. Because once that greatness is gone, you’ll be pining for it to come back and one day it might but the possibility is there that we, the fans of football and especially the Broncos, will never see such greatness before our eyes again and if we do, it could be years away or not in our lifetime. It took 15 years to return to greatness after John Elway retired. It could be longer after Manning does.

Sit back. Enjoy the ride. Enjoy the greatness.


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Tags: Denver Broncos Peyton Manning Tim Tebow

  • Jim

    Peyton Chokes everytime in the spotlight. While he’s awesome no doubt, Broncos should have stuck with Tebow, they need a quarterback for the future, not just for a couple years.

    • 5280HGH


    • Erick Trickel

      If he choked every time he was in the spotlight he wouldn’t have three SB appearances and one ring. But even still his “choking” is labeled on him rather incorrectly and if you are to go and actually look at all the stats and what not, the story is a lot different.

      No they shouldnt have stuck with Tebow. If they did, they would be like the Raiders or the Browns or the Jaguars in the fact they would still be looking for a quarterback. Tebow wasnt the future for the franchise and the fact he is out of the NFL shows that every GM, owner and coach believe that was as well.

      • Derek Forrey

        grab manning keep tebow why couldt we have both. him being out of the league shows what the nfl has become. do it now or dont do it at all. no ones looking for the long term they want a superbowl next this season or everyones on the chopping block. tebow had all of the basics and then some to be a great leader. train him up with the best pocket passer the nfl has ever seen and you create a hybrid that will destroy everyone else

        • Erick Trickel

          That is actually what I wanted. I was a big Tebow fan, and wish someone would take a chance on him. But the media and fan base behind Tebow would’ve been killer. That is a big reason he is out of the NFL, along with his inability to be a accurate passing QB.

  • Malachi

    star trek > star wars tho. lol

    • rashenulthot

      the unbelievers should be assimilated…….

  • Darrin

    Regular season wins, and points are great, but getting to the Super Bowl and losing makes the season a waste.

    Does anyone care that the Broncos scored more points last season than any team in NFL history? Nope.

    Does anyone care that Peyton broke the TD record again? Nope.

    As Shannon Sharpe famously said: “If you get to the Super Bowl, and at the end of the game that confetti is NOT falling on your head, and we are the champions is NOT playing in the background, your season is a failure. If you believe any other way, you are sadly mistaken”

    8 points? Seriously?

    • Erick Trickel

      That isnt the point of the article at all. There are people who would rather have Tebow than Manning. With Tebow the Broncos never make the playoffs let alone the Super Bowl and while it sucks that they lost it is better to make it and lose than to not even make the playoffs.

      • Darrin

        They did make the playoffs with Tebow, and in his first playoff game,he threw for over 300 yards against the best defense in the league, in one of the biggest , most exciting wins in Mile High history.

        I’m not saying I would rather have Tebow over Manning at this point, but let’s give credit where credit is due.

        And it is NOT better to make it and lose, than to not even make the playoffs. That’s ludicrous.

        The problem is, hindsight is 20/20. so there is no way to know you’re going to lose until you do, so you always want them to make it to the Super Bowl.

        Who knew the Broncos offense would choke that hard? I would rather them lose in the first round than to get blown out in the Super Bowl.

        • Erick Trickel

          I know they made it. That game was great and afterwards I was left without a voice.

          The whole point was to those wanting Tebow over Manning to sit back and enjoy what Denver currently has with Manning. Never did I discredit Tebow for what he did in Denver.

          It is better to make it and lose than not even make the playoffs or to lose in the playoffs. Ask any player in any sport and they will tell you that. Making the playoffs you are giving yourself and the team a chance. Making the Super Bowl is one step closer. At least its they had the shot. Not making the playoffs all you get is a slightly better draft pick, who may or may not pan out. No way is that better.

          Hardly any Broncos showed up that day. Only a handful played well. But in no way would I prefer them to lose in the first round than get blown out. Like you said hindsight is 20/20 and you dont know if you are going to lose until you do. Knowing how things turned out affect your decision because that blow out was embarrassing. If you were to tell me that you would rather not make the playoffs or lose right away in them this year than even make the Super Bowl, either, A) I would think you are lying, or B) think you have lost your mind. Always better to have the chance than to not.

  • Sara Chase

    So tired of Manning worship. Being in Indianapolis I was fine to see Manning go. Tired of the disappointment every time he choked in the big games. Who really cares about his “greatness” if he can’t pull it off when the pressure is on. I will take Tebow anyday over Manning. And I like fine food at fine restaurants. Tebow is fine.Too bad the idiotic NFL wouldn’t allow him to develop as a QB, while we have to gag every season watching the subpar QB’s get circulated around the league, one’s with stats far below Tebow’s, yet given chance after chance. Obvious it’s not about his play or his stats. There are other reasons obviously why the league won’t play him. I miss the fun and excitement. Can’t get excited about Manning, playing anywhere.

    • Erick Trickel

      It isn’t just Peyton Manning out there playing. To say he choked those games away is listening to just the talk without actually looking into the games. He was let down by the defense often. Yes he had bad games, but wasn’t just him. In fat, if it wern’t for Manning the Broncos wouldn’t have made it to the Super Bowl this last year. No sub-par QB could have lead them. Not with that defense.

      The “idiotic” NFL didn’t allow him to develop because he couldn’t cut it. Completing less than 50% of your passes in a season, is not a good thing. Inability to read defenses is a big key here. Something Tebow has always struggled with. Those QBs who have worse stats than Tebow, well there arent many of them, they can actually read a defense, but the biggest thing is they dont have the crazed media following Tebow does.

      • David Harris

        John Elway had a lower completion percentage than Tebow and Manning threw 28 interceptions in his first year. Sara’s point stands.

        • Erick Trickel

          He only threw 14 his first year, not 28, and his comp % was 47% to Tebows 46%.

  • harry meeks

    what a low cheap article.tim tebow is the highest character and integrity I have ever seen in sports.he NEVER is critical or negative.listening to that ignorant lack of perspective and appreciation is like watching Elway lie and deny to reporters while tim is playing his heart out for about bad usual lies and false statistics-lies prevail

    • Erick Trickel

      None of the stats are false. Tebow was a great personality for the NFL. However, he couldnt play the position. When someone cant play in the NFL they dont last. He was one of hundreds every year to bounce out of the NFL because he just cant cut it in the NFL.

      • NoNotReality

        That’s not what Mike Tomlin said

        • Erick Trickel

          Well if he felt differently then why hasn’t he pushed the Steelers to go out and sign him for post Big Ben? Actions speak louder than words.

          • BiggBear

            As i have said countless times, it’s political!The feminists that control the NFL board rooms, the same ones who made Elway get rid of TT in the first place, have made it impossible for any team to even consider TT at all. His very public stand on abortion has blackballed him from the NFL.

            He will not get on a NFL team this year. He will, however, eventually get into arena football or summer league somewhere and tear up the league. You can bet on that. All of you who insist he can’t play are wrong. Just wrong.

  • NoNotReality

    Is this same “defense that kept the score low” the same D that was ranked 30th when Tebow took over for Orton when they were 1-4 ? Maybe it was the running game that was “clutch” instead of Prater, but they were ranked 32. Oh and why couldn’t Prater pull Orton out of the hole ?

    • Erick Trickel

      You are actually trying to claim that the defense didnt keep the score low in some of those wins? The stats and scores are out there as proof they did it.

      Did the run game kick those last second field goals? Nope, that was Matt Prater. As for why he didn’t bail out Orton, only two of those games were within three. Both of which he had a chance if the offense was able to move the ball. Something they struggled with even under Tebow.

      • David Harris

        The defense in Denver got better under Tebow because he only threw 2 interceptions in the next 9 games. He put the defense in better field position so they could keep the other team from scoring. Orton threw 7 interceptions in the first 4.5 games. Tebow also ran for 660 yards and gave them the number one rushing offense in the league. All those first downs kept the defense off the field and ran the clock. The defense was ranked 24th in the league and allowed over 40 points in the big games. Orton went 4-14 with the same defense before Tebow went 8-5 and Orton never gave Prater a chance to win a game with a field goal.

        • Erick Trickel

          The amount of interceptions thrown do not result in better or worse play from the defense. Also the Broncos were 30th in the NFL on third downs, 25th on scoring and 32 on completion percentage with a -12 turnover differential. Also all those first downs they had? They averaged less first downs in every game they played. Thats why with their #1 rushing attack the time of possession was almost always even at the end of the game.

  • David Harris

    In his first 16 games, Tom Brady threw 18 TDs. Tim Tebow also threw 18 TDs and he did it with 110 fewer pass attempts. Can Brady throw? Tebow was more productive throwing and he ran for 15 scores.
    In 2001,
    Brady had 18 passing TDs in 483 attempts with 13 interceptions in his first 16 games and 1 rushing TD
    In 2010/2011
    Tebow had 18 passing TDs in 373 attempts with 9 interceptions and 10 rushing TDS, 2 two point conversions and rushed for 923 yards in his first 16. Tebow also scored 1 more passing TD and 3 rushing TDs in situational plays in 2010.
    Tebow was more productive at scoring, total offensive yards, passing, interceptions and rushing than Tom Brady when the Pats won the superbowl in 2001. Brady didn’t score more than Tebow until his 8th year in the NFL. It’s ridiculous to say that Tebow is not an NFL quarterback.

    • Erick Trickel

      Yes because touchdowns are a direct result of ones capability to pass… Not. It is the completion percentage. Which you left out like is normal with Tebow supporters. A lot of Tebows touchdowns happened because of the WR making a play after the catch. Also I never said Tebow cant run. He can. No doubt about that.