I hope for Denver Coach John Fox’s sake he has just been allowing starting QB Kyle Orton to play his way out of a job. If that is not the reason, then Fox is reaffirming what I, and maybe many believe, and that is his judgment when it comes to QB’s is suspect. In Carolina, Fox rode Jake Delhomme. Delhomme was a good but not great quarterback. Delhomme was streaky and when he was hot he was outstanding, but when he wasn’t, it was ugly. Delhomme quartebacked them to the Super Bowl where they lost to New England but after that game, he never seemed the same. They tried different quartebacks it seemed all the time, Chris Weinke, Vinny Testaverde, Matt Moore, David Carr even, but they couldn’t get any traction. Last season, they drafted Jimmy Clausen in the second round and he soon replaced Matt Moore, but the offensive line was struggling, Steve Smith was hurt, they had no tight end and Claussen was lucky he made it through the season with his head attached to his shoulders.
Fox moves to Denver where he has Orton, Brady Quinn, and Tebow. The fans in preseason were clamoring for Tebow, but the pundits assailed him. He didn’t have the mechanics they said, he was innaccurate, Merrill Hoge tore him apart on ESPN. It seemed though that none of the pundits looked at the facts. Tebow threw 88 TD’s vs. 16 picks in four years in the SEC and his QB ratings were 201.7, 172.5, 172.4 and 164.2. His average yard per completion was 9.65. In his brief time with the Broncos it is 7.98. Both Orton and Quinn are 6.55 and 5.39 respectively.
Orton going into today was 4-21 as the Denver starting QB. Quinn has a career completion percentage of 52.1. His career QB rating is 66.8. Orton’s career rating is 79.7. Tebow’s is 82.1. My point to the statistics is that both Orton and Quinn appear to be average NFL Quarterbacks. They probably would be very effective quarterbacks with a good rushing game and a good defense to back them. Trent Dilfer was an average quarterback (career rating of 70.2) and he won a Super Bowl. I don’t see Orton or Quinn winning a Super Bowl in Denver.
You know, maybe Tim Tebow won’t win a Super Bowl in Denver, but he does give them the best chance at winning because he is a winner. He ignites the team when he is in the game because he plays the game aggressively and it shows on the field and in the statistics stated above. He wants to take every play to its fullest outcome and his teammates know this and rally around him. The crowd was electric today and once he got his feet under him, Tebow was his normal self-doing whatever it takes to move the chains and score. Running, passing, scrambling, exhorting and pumping his fists. His passion for the game shows in his every move and the team needs that. He may not win many games this year. He may win 50% of them. He may throw more interceptions than touchdowns and he may not. One thing he will always do is compete at the highest level and find ways to make things happen. I am already on record on this blog supporting him. I don’t care about his mechanics; Ken Stabler had poor mechanics, Billy Kilmer threw some passes in games that looked like they should be shot out of the sky; Jim McMahon was far from elegant and Brett Favre threw the ball anyway he needed to but it didn’t matter because when they kicked off the ball to start the game, these guys and many like them, took the fight to the other team with all they had and they won.
The old saying goes that everyone looks good in shorts but not everyone can play when it matters. Tim Tebow may not wow people in practice but he sure has a knack for winning football games.