Tim Tebow Must Improve Accuracy to Survive Patriots' Final Cuts

Jesse ReedCorrespondent IAugust 15, 2013

PHILADELPHIA, PA - AUGUST 09:   Tim Tebow #5 of the New England Patriots drops back to throw as Emmanuel Acho #53 of the Philadelphia Eagles defends on August 9, 2013 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennslyvania.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Tim Tebow still can't hit the broad side of a barn with a handful of rice. 

Josh McDaniels' pet project got plenty of work in against the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 1 of the preseason. Ryan Mallett was banged up early, which opened the door for a heavy dose of Tebow time.

Let's cut right to the chase and be honest about his performance as a passer—it was awful. 

Here are the raw numbers: Tebow went just 4-of-12 passing for 55 yards with zero touchdowns, and he was sacked three times for 23 yards. It's worth noting that two of his completions came on screen passes, which are essentially extended handoffs. 

It was a clinic on ineptitude at the quarterback position.

Tebow displayed the same traits that have held him back through his first three seasons. He didn't see the field well, locked on to his primary reads—often staring them down, even when his receivers were plainly covered—and showed abominable accuracy on most of his incompletions. 

It was the kind of performance that even Tebow apologists must acknowledge hurt his chances of making the final roster cuts in New England.

Sure, he was able to move the ball a bit with his legs, earning 31 yards on four carries. But the Patriots already feature a devastating rushing attack, led by Stevan Ridley and Shane Vereen. 

The only way Tebow is going to make the team's final roster is by showing his worth as a pocket passer, and so far he has failed in this pursuit. 

When head coach Bill Belichick was asked about whether or not Tebow would make the roster heading into the regular season, "The Hoody" was dismissive, as noted by Doug Alden in a special report for USA Today Sports:

"That's not anything that we're ready to talk about right now," Belichick said. "A lot of competition out there. We'll see how it all plays out."

Nobody should expect Belichick to make any definitive statement at this point—he never does, anyway. But you don't have to be a mind reader to know Tebow can't afford another train wreck of a performance.

Perhaps the most damnable aspect of Tebow's game as it pertains to his tenuous position on the Patriots roster is his inability to complete simple five-yard passes—a staple of New England's offense. He's far more accurate when throwing long passes, which comes in handy at times, but he struggles badly with the most basic of throws. 

Tebow must improve his accuracy and decision-making if he has any hope of surviving New England's roster cuts. If the former Heisman Trophy winner isn't able to do so during the next couple of preseason games, then his time with the Patriots will likely be short-lived. 


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