Welcome

If this is your first time here, please visit the "about" page. If you've been here before, thanks for stopping back in.

The comments are open, and your voice is welcome.

Like It Or Not, Tim Tebow Has Arrived

The most obvious locally-relevant fallout from Tim Tebow‘s latest miracle on Sunday is that it deprives Ravens fans of a chance to see their team face the Steelers a third time. Which is probably disturbing news to some, probably a sigh of relief to others. I think it’s clear regardless that the Steelers were in no position to contend for a Super Bowl anyway and likely would have lost had they worked their way into a chance to come to Baltimore.

But that’s not the thing.

Rather, the story is that Tebow now stands as living and damn-near-incontrovertible proof that intangibles matter.

Here’s a guy who by every conventional metric should be a nobody in the NFL. Virtually nothing about the way he plays quarterback suggests success, at least based on what we “know” about the position. Yet here he is.

He rescued the Broncos from utter irrelevance early in the season. That was crazy. He then sputtered down the stretch, giving rise to a tide of “I told you so.” Then he spent the first quarter of Sunday’s game looking like he couldn’t author a big play in a pickup game.

That second quarter was insane. Not only did he author big plays, he basically authored only big plays. Then he settled down again, the Steelers crept back in and then…well, you know how it ended.

You look at his final stat line — 10 for 21 for 316 yards and two TDs, and a rushing TD on top of it — and it just doesn’t make sense. A completion percentage below .500 coupled with two scores and a 31.6 yard average? What the hell? How is that even possible?

The answer is, it shouldn’t be. But every now and then you see this, guys who just do, conventional wisdom be damned.

Steelers linebacker James Farrior summed it up when he said, “They made more plays than we thought they were capable of making.”

Now, generally speaking, one of two things happen to guys like Tebow. They either flame out quickly or they end up rewriting the rules. Michael Vick — as much as I loathe him for his off-field conduct — deserves credit on the field because before him a quarterback’s running ability was always considered a bonus, never a primary threat.

More locally — and as a way of making a broader point — Cal Ripken rewrote the rules for shortstops. Before him, the idea of a big guy with some power playing that position was unheard of.

You can’t quantify guys like that because the surprise is what makes them who they are. Received wisdom binds us to what we can measure until someone comes along and shows another way. There really aren’t any rules, there are only things we say won’t work until someone shows us that they actually will.

I don’t know what the future holds for Tebow but I’m going to come right out and say that you, I, and everybody else would be crazy to doubt him. His skill set may not make sense but he gets the job done. After what he did against the Steelers, who am I — who is anyone — to say it can’t continue?

Enough folks have already been proven wrong going down that path. I’m not trying to join them. He might very well flame out but as far as I’m concerned he’s doing special things on the football field and the only logical response to it is, “what the hell, let’s see what this kid can do next.” Because, truth is, you never know.

24 comments to Like It Or Not, Tim Tebow Has Arrived

  • dan the man

    Tebow defies explanation at this point. Or rather, you can explain him away, but he just keeps coming back and making you sort of change your explanation.

    This game was the first extended look I had at Tebow and I came in thinking “ok, this guy is supposed to not be able throw very well” and he’s bombing it all over the field against the Steelers defense. What?

    I did think the Steelers would pull it out in OT if they got the ball back. But their idiotic defensive scheme on that first play ruined any chance of that. Just.. weird.

    So now the common thought is there’s no WAY Tebow can beat Tom Brady in NE. Well, sure. I guess. I’ve stopped trying to predict Tebow because he sort of defies prediction.

  • Andrew

    @ dan the man:
    I dunno. I thought the book on him was that he’s incredibly inconsistent. As in, you can beat him up for 3 quarters, but he’ll pull out a pretty good quarter in the mix. And that was more or less what I saw, right? The second quarter was magical, everything else was pretty ho-hum, and then one big and unexpected pass in OT.

    That he did that against a beat up Steelers team that looked frankly overconfident is…well, something. I just don’t know if that game really changed the conversation about Tebow, even though it was unexpected.

    Which is to say: I’m still not buying him. He had all freaking day to sit in the pocket. His defense kept Pittsburgh off the board a lot. That shit is a true total team effort, and it’s silly to dumb it down to just “Tebow beat the Steelers! Tebow beat the Steelers!”

  • PW

    Lets be honest here, the Broncos and Tebow beat the second string Steelers. That wasn’t the team that beat New England, that wasn’t the team we beat in Pittsburgh. That was a depleted and rundown team.

    I’m going to point out one injury that I think was key to the game, Maurkice Pouncy who is the keystone on that O-line. Pouncy was out the first game of this season when the Steelers came to Baltimore. I think we all remember what happened then; our defensive line dominated their O-line and gave Roethlisberger fits. Compound that with a hobbled Big Ben and its bad news for the Steelers Offense. Plus, there were several miscues by Legursky.

    Their defense also was depleted. Clark being missing is a big deal, he’s their leading tackler. Also by the time the 2nd quarter came around both Hampton and Keisel were on the bench, which greatly hurt their pass rush. Not to mention Dick Lebeau pulling a Cam Cameron and deciding to only to focus on one aspect of the game.

    The last thing I will say is that regardless of Steelers injuries and scheme problems, the person responsible for this win is Thomas. I mean, wow, he beat Ike Taylor all day. Just made him look silly and got open almost at will. Even Brady Quinn would have been able to make those throws. Tebow has made some progress with his accuracy but he still has a handful of throws every game that are intended for open receivers but are just completely uncatchable.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    if tebow beats the pats i’ll go to church

  • dan the man

    Completely off topic, but I found that if you just press “stop” real quick on your browser, you can keep the Baltimore Sun “PAY ME” pop up from appearing and you can still read all the articles.

    That is all.

  • PW

    @ Big Ben’s Motorcycle:
    Just make sure to be back home (or at your local bar) before 1 pm

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    dan the man wrote:

    Completely off topic, but I found that if you just press “stop” real quick on your browser, you can keep the Baltimore Sun “PAY ME” pop up from appearing and you can still read all the articles.
    That is all.

    haha i almost posted this a few weeks ago but was afraid some sun person would read it and snitch.

  • dan the man

    So what’s the pulse on the Texans game? Everyone feeling confident? Concerned about Foster/Tate and Andre Johnson?

    Every time I get the fear, I just think of M&T raining noise on a rookie QB and I feel better.

    Ravens 24, Texans 13

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    this is the first playoff game the ravens have played where i honestly can’t see them losing. not at home to tj yates with the team at full strength (as reported by the sun). i know it’s foolish to think that in the nfl but fuck it.

    one added element i’m really enjoying is how much the media has tweaked a few players before the playoffs. it’ll be interesting to see how lewis, reed, and flacco respond to recent criticism. they’re pretty chippy and i love it.

  • PW

    @ Big Ben’s Motorcycle:
    I can see them losing this game. The Texans can control the pace of the game and keep our defense on the field with their running game and keep it close with their defense. At that point they may not need much from Yates in order to win.

    That having been said, I think the Ravens should win this one. The Texans are basically the Ravens (almost identical defensive stats and better running attack), but with a Rookie quarterback and playing on the road. Also the Ravens should be rested and playing a full roster, which should help them immensely.

    If they don’t win, it may be one of the worst losses in the history of the franchise.

  • neal s

    @ PW: I don’t think it’d be one of the worst, I think it’d be the worst. The Texans are a sneaky good team with a lot going for them but there’s no way the Ravens should lose at home, after a bye and fully healthy, to a team starting a third-string rookie QB. Doing so would be a massive disappointment.

    Now that said, I think it absolutely could happen. Pretty much for the reasons you pointed out. This is one of those games where all it might take for the Texans is to stay close and get the big play at the right time. Foster can bust a long run at any moment. Johnson can go for a huge catch-and-run at any moment. If it’s 20-17 Ravens late in the fourth when something like that happens, can the Ravens overcome it?

    All logic suggests that the Ravens handle business here to the tune of something like 24-13. I’d put the odds of that happening at about 80%. But this is no sure thing.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    you can BOOK THIS ONE TO THE RAVENS

  • neal s

    @ Big Ben’s Motorcycle: You’re almost certainly right about that. All I’m saying is that the way the match shapes up gives the Texans a puncher’s chance. Odds are overwhelming for the Ravens but they’d better play smart and hard from coin flip to final whistle.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    i was just quoting michael reghi ha. anyway i’m sure by friday i will have convinced myself otherwise!

  • Mike R

    Just when you thought the media coverage of Tebow couldn’t be anymore anoying, some douchebag had to write a song about him. “hes a baller, playmaker, shot caller…” God shut the fuck up!

    Now that I got that off my chest. I have mixed feelings about the Ravens this Sunday. Sure we havent lost at home this year. Historically we own rookie QB’s. Week off and all.

    But I dont think you can short change T.J. Yates. He’s a 3rd stringer only because he’s a rookie. Not because hes worse than Matt Leinart. Joe Flacco was a rookie once, and had Troy Smith not come down with a freak case of tonsilitis, Flacco starts his rookie year 3rd string. Our rookie beat a 14-2 Titans team en route to an AFC title game appearance. Whats to say Yates cant manage a game in which Foster, Johnson, and the defense make all the plays? I just hope Andre Johnson didnt study tape of the San Diego game, because it was a blue print on how to get open against our DB’s.

    I always worry about teams who take that week off. It didn’t help in 06′. 3 years ago, 3 of the 4 teams with a week off got bounced. 2 out of 4 last year. Weather could be a factor too. This is no way a gimmie and the 7 1/2 point spead is way to generous for the Ravens.

    But I’m always nervous.

  • dan the man

    Yeah, I have to say, Houston is kind of the team I don’t want to play because they are so similar to the Ravens.

    We’ll win if we can say at the end of the day that our great players played great. If we’re saying, “what happened to our defense” or “where was ray rice”, then we’re in for some disappointment. I guess that’s obvious.

    Re: the bye week, though, the Ravens are statistically nearly unstoppable following a bye and playing at home. Also, no one is talking about our Star Receiver, Anquan Boldin, who dropped like 180 yards on the Texans. He’ll be arguably the healthiest he’s been all year.

    But I’m like Mike – always nervous. I’m not sure why this game is such a lock to most people/media. Sure, Yates is a rookie, but he’s no slouch. I think in the end, though, that the crowd and the pass rush will be too much for him. Sunday needs to hurry up and get here.

  • dan the man

    Make that 130 yards…

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    another thing i forgot to mention that’s gotten surprisingly little coverage…is this ray’s last home game? i totally see it (and fully endorse it) if the ravens manage to win it all. ed reed too.

    a year ago i kind of freaked out at the notion, but honestly i’m ready for new blood now.

  • dan the man

    It’s only his last home game if New England doesn’t get Tebowed, which I think they totally will. I’m dead serious, too.

  • PW

    @ Mike R:
    I was just thinking about the TJ Yates situation. Everybody keeps saying, “oh, they have their 3rd sting quarterback.” Yates is 3rd string because he’s a rookie, not from lack of talent. Also, he hasn’t played poorly and he’s had some time to settle into the offense (its not like this is his first start). On another team he’s probably a #2 quarterback, on a few in the league he would probably be starting. TJ Yates is not to be underestimated, especially with Andre Johnson healthy.

    Most fans just seem overly confident going into this one and that worries me. We can only hope Harbaugh has the team’s heads on straight, which I think he will.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    yeah okay i’m at about 21-20 ravens now. still believe though.

  • Andrew

    Oh, yeah, Tim Tebow’s arrived for sure. No doubt about it.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    man what an incredible early game. jim harbaugh is such an awesome coach. did you guys read his lips after vernon davis’ touchdown? he grabbed him and appered to yell “YOU FUCKING DID THIS SHIT”.

    HARBOWL

  • dan the man

    dan the man wrote:

    It’s only his last home game if New England doesn’t get Tebowed, which I think they totally will. I’m dead serious, too.

    LOL idiot.

    Big Ben’s Motorcycle wrote:

    man what an incredible early game. jim harbaugh is such an awesome coach. did you guys read his lips after vernon davis’ touchdown? he grabbed him and appered to yell “YOU FUCKING DID THIS SHIT”.
    HARBOWL

    Yeah, man. Love the emotion from Davis after the TD, too.