Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Tim Tebow Engineered The Strangest Play Of The Young NFL Season

Tebow's under a microscope, no doubt, so his plays are going to be scrutinized more than just about anyone else's. But last night's double-reverse-scramble-pass was so balletically chaotic, we'd have to break this down no matter who ran it. It just so happened to be Tebow who managed to be brilliant and boneheaded on the same snap, getting two Cowboys injured and drawing three penalties on the Broncos.


On a long third-and-goal toward the end of the half, no one could get open, despite three receivers plus the TE and RB in the flat — get used to that. Tebow takes off through the hole created by his left tackle, going about three yards past the line of scrimmage. Forced toward the sideline, he lays a pair of nice stiff-arms on Josh Thomas, then doubles back across the field to where the pocket used to be. Despite the fact that his lineman have already gone downfield, he dumps it off to Britt Davis for a useless gain of six.

When all was said and done, two Cowboys were lying injured, and Denver was flagged for an illegal forward pass, an ineligible receiver downfield, and an illegal block in the back.

How much pop psychology bullshit can we bring to bear on a single preseason snap? Do we presume Tebow is aware of Kyle Orton's struggles on third down in the red zone, and was trying to set himself apart? Or does his refusal to simply step out of bounds reflect something more innate about his drive to succeed? Perhaps we can denigrate Tebow's football IQ because he wasn't aware of the line of scrimmage. Perhaps we renew the clamor for him to be converted to tight end or fullback after seeing how hard it is to take him down. Or maybe we look at this play as a whole and decide that Tebow's creativity and unwillingness to give up on a play are exactly what the Broncos need right now, a chance at excitement rather than a competent, boring Kyle Orton leading them to a joyless five-win season.

The fact is that Tim Tebow has been so polarizing since he came on the scene that no matter what he does in his career, everyone will forever be able to see just what they want to see in him. For that reason alone, we're firmly on board the "let Tebow start" bandwagon.