4. Tim Tebow, 2010-2011
Everyone remembers Tim Tebow's work from 2010-11 with the Denver Broncos. It's remembered as one of the most frustrating but exciting times in Denver Broncos history. Tebow came to the Broncos as a first-round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft. That selection shocked the entire NFL world as people debated Tebow's NFL Draft status for months leading up to the Draft.
Josh McDaniels obviously felt like he could help enhance Tebow's weaknesses as a passer and highlight his strengths as a runner, but we never got to see his vision for Tebow unfold. Perhaps that was for the best.
After McDaniels was fired in the 2010 season, the Broncos' season was lost and Tebow got the chance to reignite some fire in the fan base, which he did over the final handful of games that season. He came off the sideline as Kyle Orton's backup and did enough in the Broncos' final three weeks of the 2010 season that some people thought he might get the nod as the starter in 2011.
But new head coach John Fox went with the safer option, which was Kyle Orton. And the results to begin the 2011 season were predictable. The Broncos started the season 1-3, and in the fifth game, Kyle Orton's play was uninspiring enough that John Fox turned to Tim Tebow. And Tebow provided a spark, throwing and running for a touchdown in a near-comeback against the Chargers.
From that point on, "Tebow Time" became a national phenomenon. Although the offense struggled to do anything at all for the first three quarters, Tebow became an MVP-caliber player in the 4th quarter of many games, leading the Broncos to some of the most exciting come-from-behind wins in franchise history. He helped the Broncos win 7 of the 11 regular season games he started that year, and led them to a playoff in in the Wild Card round that year against the reigning Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers.
The magic would run out the next week against the New England Patriots, but the 2011 season is one of the most exciting, unexplainable years in Broncos franchise history. And Tebow is largely to thank. To this day, he remains the only QB drafted by the Broncos to win a playoff game for the team.