Tim Tebow News: Tony Dungy Offers Words of Encouragement to Free-Agent QB

Matt FitzgeraldCorrespondent IIIMay 25, 2013

SEATTLE, WA - NOVEMBER 11:  Quarterback Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Jets warms up prior to the game against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on November 11, 2012 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Free-agent quarterback Tim Tebow is still without an NFL team after being released by the New York Jets in April.

Although it doesn't seem like anything is going to work out anytime soon, Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy provided some positive, encouraging advice for Tebow recently as his wait to find a new destination continues.

On Dungy's blog at All Pro Dad, he contended that a higher power essentially has the proper path slated for Tebow and that it will reveal itself eventually. Dungy also discussed how Tebow lifts the spirits of his teammates and is a flat-out winner who raises the morale in the locker room.

Dungy's advice was essentially for Tebow to stay patient, which has to be difficult at this point.

Tebow has been gracious—albeit rather uninteresting—to the media in a career that has, to date, been defined by patience. As a first-round pick of the Denver Broncos in 2010, he had to wait behind Kyle Orton.

Although he was given three starts in 2010, the new Denver regime didn't initially start Tebow. Only a 1-4 start under Orton and fans clamoring for a change thrust Tebow into the starting role, which resulted in an AFC West title and playoff victory.

When the Broncos acquired Peyton Manning, Tebow was traded to the Jets, where he waited some more behind Mark Sanchez and even backup Greg McElroy. Tebow was never given an opportunity to start in his only season in the Big Apple.

It's ironic that patience is considered a virtue. For one of the most perceptibly virtuous athletes in recent history, this is a trying time for Tebow.

Going from a Heisman Trophy-winning college quarterback at Florida to a first-round draft selection is a logical progression. What's rare is that he's never gotten a true opportunity as a No. 1 quarterback entering training camp.

Now, that makes sense in some regard. Tebow is allegedly a bad practice player—and frankly, he wasn't very good on Sundays until the final quarters of his improbable 2011 comebacks with the Broncos. Pro football is a merit-based system, and if Tebow can't earn it on the practice field, he won't be given a shot as a starting QB moving forward.

Then again, even though he practices horribly, he still does precisely what Dungy says. He provides a boost and enhances the character of whatever team he's on.

Perhaps the best example was this rousing comeback against the Jets in 2011. Teammates engulfed Tebow after his game-winning touchdown, and superstar cornerback Champ Bailey embraced him on the sidelines.

There may not be an NFL team for Tebow, but Dungy, in expressing facets of the Christian faith he shares with Tebow, seems to think that there is an opportunity somewhere.

Whether due to the media circus that comes with his incredible star power, the notion that he has to change positions or a lack of personnel need, Tebow's market is dry at this time. Patience is typically rewarded, and Tebow hopes that assertion will hold true for him.