Tim Tebow: 4 Reasons Denver Broncos Can Upset New England Patriots
Just for a moment, let go of the normal connotations that go along with mentioning the name, Tim Tebow. Release all of the animosity and exhaustion from over-coverage of the young player and think about him this way: as the player who occupies the most important position in football for a playoff team.
Of course, there are numerous examinations, recommendations and speculations about why the Broncos will or will not continue their playoff run. Chief among them seem to be what effect Tebow will have on the game.
Forgetting the debate about what this means to Tebow's legacy, or projections for future NFL success, think about him in terms of what he can do in this one game to turn the fortunes for his team.
Just as any team would hang their hopes on their quarterback, so too should the Broncos, and here is why.
He Already Beat a Better Defense
Even though there were absences, injuries and poor scheming, the Pittsburgh Steelers defense was superior to the one that Denver will face on Saturday.
No matter the circumstances, Tim Tebow was able to execute the game plan that was provided to him by his coaches and that is a huge part of why teams win or lose games.
Denver took advantage of the weaknesses that were present just like any good team would, and that should give confidence to the idea that he can do it again.
The proof not only came last week, but also in the first game against New England where Tebow and the Broncos were marching at will, until turnovers caused Denver to fall behind and get off their game.
Tebow Can Harnass Momentum as Well as Anyone
That crazed look on Tim Tebow's face in the second quarter of the Steelers game is one that has not often been seen since his days at Florida.
Still, as Gator fans know all to well, when Tebow gets that look in his eyes, he knows that it is time to attack. Were it not for some questionable calls last weekend, Tebow may have put the game almost out of reach.
The second quarter, which is usually nightmarish for Denver, was the time when Tebow and company seized the momentum and made the 20-0 run that helped the reach overtime and eventually win the game.
If the defense creates a big turnover, or the special teams produce a huge run back, Tebow will take that momentum and deliver something positive for Denver.
The flip side is that fans in Denver have seen negative plays spin Tebow's momentum in the opposite direction. The trick for Denver, and Tim Tebow, is to keep those from happening.
Andre Carter Is Not Playing
Andre Carter had 10 sacks on the season before being lost to injury in the last game against Denver. His replacement, Shaun Ellis, has one.
Ellis has a wealth of NFL experience but is not the pass-rusher that Andre Carter was developing into and cannot contain Tebow as well either.
The loss of Carter will make trying to pressure Tebow, and also keep him from breaking the pocket, a much tougher proposition.
Ideally, the offensive game plan will take this into account and have multiple plays designed to attack this weakness.
Nobody ever wants to see a player lose their season to injury, but it is a part of the game and Denver needs to take advantage of it.
He Has the Confidence to 'Pull the Trigger'
The now infamous quote from John Elway has certainly sunk in with Tim Tebow and was apparent in Denver's victory over Pittsburgh.
Every deep pass to Demaryius Thomas only strengthened Tebow's belief in what Elway said to him, and based on how his final pass went, how could he not want to get back out on the field to try it again?
Offensive coordinator Mike McCoy would do well to take a page out of Alabama's playbook and look to the passing game a little bit more as it is still something that most opponents don't expect.
If Tebow and the Broncos can seize the confidence that has sprouted from the impressive showing in the passing game last weekend, then they will have a great shot to upset the Patriots.