I know, I know. Most of you are saying “I never felt bad for him.” Well, for a while, I did. I felt bad that a guy who was such a tremendous athlete, intense competitor and all-around good person was treated so poorly by the Jets, discarded so quickly by the Broncos and made into a punchline by the general public.
When my favorite team — the Patriots — picked him up, I was happy for him and excited about the possibilities in New England. Then I sat back and watch in horror as Tebow took the field over and over again in the preseason playing only the quarterback position — and failing everytime. “Why aren’t they using him anywhere else?”, I thought. “Maybe they are holding back on showing off what they plan on doing with him during the regular season”, I said to myself.
Well, now I know I was wrong and I know why. There never was a “Tebow package.” He never wanted to play anything BUT quarterback.
There was a time when I admired Tebow’s sticktoitiveness. I liked that he was teaching us — adults and kids alike — to follow your dreams and ignore the detractors. I felt like he was setting a great example. I no longer feel this way.
Tebow demonstrated quite clearly this preseason that he is incapable of playing quarterback in the NFL at a competitive level. When he was winning games in Denver, he was backed by what was then a great defense. They were able to minimize the damage caused by his ineptitude. During the 2013 preseason, Tebow had no such luck, as everyone who was on the field with and against him were in the process of themselves trying to prove they belonged in the NFL. Against this competition, Tebow was less than average.
Allow me to stray off topic if you will. Let’s say I wanted to be a Navy SEAL. Imagine I’m in fantastic shape, I can run for days and fire every weapon known to man with sniper-like accuracy. That’s all great, but what if I can’t swim? What if the finest swimming coaches on the planet had tried for years to teach me how to not only swim, but do so at the level of a Navy SEAL and I still couldn’t swim? The answer is simple: I wouldn’t be a Navy SEAL. Maybe I’d look into becoming a sniper.
This is the mentality Tim Tebow should have at this point. He is talented. He is a great athlete. He could help a number of NFL teams at a variety of positions in the league if he was willing to explore a change in his profession. He just won’t.
Reports surfaced late yesterday about how some teams had contacted Tebow, interested in having him play another position for them. He flat-out refused. He denied gainful employment — not that he needs the money — purely out of principle. He denied other teams his athletic abilities out of his own selfish ambitions. He won’t play in Canada. He won’t play Arena Football. He won’t play rugby. He’ll only play quarterback in the NFL and he’s not budging.
Tim Tebow is playing a game of poker with the NFL. The problem is, he has pocket 2’s. The NFL hits a royal flush on the river every time. He’s been given chance after chance to fold. He scoffed at those chances every time and went all in. Now he’s about to leave the table, and nobody should feel bad about it.
I believe Tim Tebow lives every day of his life with the intention of teaching someone in the world a valuable lesson about living. Well, I think he succeeded. He’s taught us all that there is only so much you can do to try and help somebody. Once they’ve repeatedly denied your offer out of stubbornness or pride, it’s time to move on and let them fend for themselves.
BY J.P. SCOTT ON SEPTEMBER 6, 2013
Follow @JPScottSports on Twitter.