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February: a time on the NFL calendar when players are free to relax, drink margaritas on the beach and erase their brains of anything and everything football related.
Not for Tim Tebow. His vacation is already over.
ESPN is reporting that Tebow has been in Los Angeles with UCLA offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone working on his throwing mechanics—mechanics that contributing to Tebow being ranked 44th in the new, in-depth B/R rankings of the top 50 NFL quarterbacks.
They’ve been going at it twice a day for a few hours each session according to the report, and Mazzone’s son Taylor has helped as well.
Why Mazzone? He previously helped Tebow when he was preparing for the NFL draft in 2010. Mazzone just landed the UCLA gig after holding the same title at Arizona State over the last two years. Mazzone was Philip Rivers’ coordinator at NC State and has plenty of experience in helping QBs fine tune their mechanics.
So can he be the one to pull off the miracle and turn Tebow into a sound QB mechanically?
According to Mazzone, he is providing just one of the many opinions on how Tebow should improve his motion:
It's kind of like a golfer who hit that bad drive. Every other guy in the foursome can tell you what you did wrong and all three opinions are different. We're just going out and kind of going back to the basics and working on some fundamentals to try and become a little more efficient.
It’s not rocket science here. If Tebow can develop a quicker release, he will be able to stay in the pocket longer and not have to rely on his feet so much. It’s all about repetitions, and Tebow didn’t get those during the lockout last season. Getting the reps now by working with various coaches throughout the offseason is exactly what he needs.
It’s no surprise Tebow is doing the extra work, but it’s a reminder of just how badly the 24-year-old wants to succeed. He’s willing to live in a different state just to get better.
While working with Mazzone is an excellent start, I think Tebow should travel around the country seeking different opinions as if he were Peyton Manning’s neck. Tebow must soak up as many tips as possible on how to adjust and combine them all in time for training camp in July.
I know September is a long ways away, but Tebow is already getting a leg up on the competition…or is catching up depending on the side of the fence you currently sit on with No. 15.