Denver Broncos Fans Must Face Reality: There's No Good Reason to Start Tim Tebow

Reid BrooksAnalyst IDecember 15, 2010

GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 12:  Quarterbacks Brady Quinn #9 and Tim Tebow #15 of the Denver Broncos stand on the sideline during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on December 12, 2010 in Glendale, Arizona.   The Cardinals defeated the Broncos 43-13.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

At least, not for the last three games of this season.

There are three possible outcomes if the coaching staff (and front office) decides that Tim Tebow should be playing the full time, non-gadget quarterback position for the end of the year.

Tim Tebow could play very, very well:

In which case the Broncos will probably still lose. Because, lets face it, Kyle Orton is a pretty darn good quarterback. Yes he has been on a slump, but there was just a change in the coaching staff and the play-caller, so that seems to explain his issues from the last two games.

If Kyle Orton can't win games in this offense, then Tim Tebow probably couldn't either, even if he was playing very well. But, lets say, hypothetically, he did win games. What happens if he comes in and he is the sole cause of the Broncos winning all of their last three games?

In that circumstance, the Broncos still don't go to the post season and end up screwing up their position in the draft. While the scenario is highly improbable, fans might get some enjoyment out of watching it happen, but it does virtually nothing to benefit the Denver Broncos for the future.

Tim Tebow could play mediocre football:

In which case the Broncos still lose and fans are somewhat distraught about the fact that Tim Tebow isn't actually "Football Jesus". I guess he gets a little bit of game time (which he has already had, see: preseason), but that doesn't seem to do much good for Denver.

Tim Tebow is a disaster:

I honestly think this is the most likely current scenario. I think if you put him out on the field surrounded by confused, veteran personnel and a confused coaching staff that is in flux, Tim Tebow implodes. I think he ends up looking like the second coming of Patrick Ramsey or Chris Simms (take your pick of disastrous back up quarterback). In which case, Broncos fans eat even more despair by realizing Tebow isn't perfect by NFL standards.

He might be some day, but he isn't there yet. And throwing him out there now could set his development back by a year. Or more. Who knows?

The side effects:

Having Tebow on the sideline and holding him out, is in itself giving Broncos fans some hope. Not knowing whether or not he is good is allowing fans to feel like the team could possibly have a bright future. There is no reason to ruin that by putting him in now if he isn't the best player and he isn't ready to play.

Further, the moment that the team pulls Kyle Orton, who happens to be a good quarterback with some trade value, they declare that the Orton era in Denver is over. That kills leverage to negotiate if any team inquires about him during the off season. And teams probably will.

There will be clubs that need a veteran quarterback with experience next year (Minnesota, Carolina, Cincinnati perhaps). Orton could be a valuable trade commodity, if the team decides to go in that direction.

This team is best off losing out right now, simply for draft considerations. I'd rather see them do that behind Kyle Orton (who can handle it), rather than under a stressed rookie who isn't ready to play.

Fans should be considering the limited upside and the potentially serious downside to starting Tim Tebow in the last couple of games this season.