NFL Draft 2011 Cam Newton vs Tim Tebow: Forget the Hype, Who's the Better QB?
The last two NFL Drafts have seen an incredible amount of hype and scrutiny surrounding the quarterback position and two signal-callers in particular.
Last season, it was Florida quarterback Tim Tebow who was the media's main focus, and this year, it has been Auburn quarterback Cameron Newton.
Tebow ended up going to the Broncos with the 25th pick, while Newton was made the first overall pick by the Panthers in this year's draft.
Both players were outstanding in college, but it's time to forget about all of the hype and decide who is going to be the better professional quarterback.
Cam Newton or Tim Tebow?
Tebow has good arm strength, but he doesn't have Cam Newton's arm strength.
Newton has one of the strongest arms in this year's draft and his best throw is probably his deep ball, while Tebow can put some zip on his throws, but his deep ball can flutter at times and hang in the air too much.
Newton has a quick release and gets the ball down the field in a hurry, while Tebow has worked tirelessly on his release, and while it has gotten better, it's still a work in progress.
Arm strength is clearly the strength of both of these players as a passer.
I am giving the slight edge to Tebow in accuracy because he completed a higher percentage of his throws at Florida in an offense than ran the ball fewer times than Auburn did.
Neither of these guys have great accuracy, and while that may be the biggest concern for both of these quarterbacks moving forward, I think Tebow will have an easier time completing his passes.
Newton throws a more accurate deep ball than Tebow, but Tebow is the more accurate passer in short to medium routes. I think that is more important because they will both be throwing more intermediate passes than deep balls.
Tebow completed just 50 percent of his passes for the Broncos last season on just 81 attempts, but I believe Newton will complete fewer than half of his passes as a rookie for the Panthers.
Both of these guys are very good runners at the quarterback position, but Cam Newton is on the level of only Michael Vick when it comes to signal-callers who can carry the rock.
Newton carried the ball 264 times at Auburn, running for 1,473 yards and 20 touchdowns.
Tebow carried the ball 217 times for 910 yards and 14 touchdowns his senior season at Florida, and he ran 43 times for 227 yards and six touchdowns for the Broncos last season.
I don't expect Newton to run the ball nearly as much in the NFL, but he should still be a threat to take off at any time that defenses will have to respect.
I am well aware of all that Newton accomplished in college, and his championships in back-to-back years (at the junior college level and at Auburn) were definitely impressive.
With that said, I would rather have Tim Tebow leading my football team because he is concerned about making the players around him the best they can be, while Newton appears to be more concerned with making Cam the best that he can be.
Both of these guys are strong leaders but I think Newton is looked at as a leader more because of his athletic ability, which helps him to win games, while Tebow was more of a leader in the sense of getting his teammates to play hard.
Both quarterbacks led their team to big second half wins last season; Newton against Alabama and Tebow against the Texans.
Newton is a tough quarterback who can take a hit and dish out his own on occasion, but he has yet to knock Eric Berry on his butt like Tim Tebow.
I know Newton has not had the chance to do so, but Tebow did, and that's why he gets the edge for now.
I would never question either of these players when it comes to toughness, but I think Tebow is about as tough as they come.
This one is pretty easy, and while Newton has been called fake by some, I think the same thing could have been said (and was said by some) about Tebow.
However, I think people have a right to question Newton based on all of his previous indiscretions, while no one has a reason to question Tebow, given the fact that he has stayed about as clean as they come.
Tebow is the kind of player who can be the face of a franchise, while Newton still has a ways to go in that department.
And the Winner Is...
It is very possible that neither of these quarterbacks make it in the NFL, and it also possible that they both become stars.
But since neither of them are exceptional passers, I believe their success will come down to their leadership abilities and their toughness.
Tebow has the edge in both of those traits, and he has the work ethic to make it happen. Whether the same is true for Newton still remains to be seen, but I think he is in for a rocky time in Carolina.
If I had to take one of these guys to lead my organization into the future, I would take Tim Tebow.