Tim Tebow: The Statistics Shows Us Why He Could Be a Great QB in the NFL

Pete WilliamsCorrespondent IOctober 10, 2011

Tim Tebow: an aggressive playmaker
Tim Tebow: an aggressive playmakerDoug Pensinger/Getty Images

In my professional life, I have worked with a lot of great statistically gifted colleagues, and although I'm not a numbers guy myself—I know how you can make statistics do what ever you want them to.

So when I look at statistics I always like to keep it simple.

What caught my eye with Tebows stats was, that although he completed only 4-of-10 he still moved the ball 79 yards on those four completions and threw for a TD with no INTs.

On top of that he rushed for 38 yards on six attempts and a TD.

The Broncos outscored the Chargers 14-6 in the second half of the game. But it wasn't because Tebow wowed with lots of passes and a high completion percentage. It was because he made big plays, and more importantly, made it possible for his receivers to make big plays.


The Stats That Matter

Tebow's yards per passes thrown was 7.9 yards. On average that would rank 11th in the NFL, the same as Michael Vick, just below Ben Rothlisberger and just above Matt Hasselbeck. As a comparison Kyle Orton is 29th with 6.3 yds per passes thrown.

Tebow's yards per rush attempt was 6.3. On average that would rank 2nd in the NFL, behind Michael Vick's 8.9 and ahead of LeSean McCoy with 5.8. And there isn't another QB in the top 50. 

In 16 plays, Tebow accounted for 117 yards, 2 TDs and no INTs—that's about 7.3 yards per play and a TD for every eight plays.

I would have liked to be able to see how the Broncos RBs performed in yards per rush attempt in the second half, compared to their average in the previous games. But I haven't been able to dig those stats up.


What Does This Mean For the Denver Broncos Offense

This was only one half of play for Tebow—a very small sample size against a defense that didn't fully prepare for Tebow as the QB. But to me it just continues the picture we saw in the three games Tebow started in 2010.

With Kyle Orton in John Fox's run first offense, the QB play has been more about game management than being aggressive and making plays down field.

Brandon Lloyd has been critical of the game managing approach, and Tebow's play and the stats from the Chargers game showed us glimpses of what a more aggressive, big play approach with Tim Tebow behind center can do for the Broncos offense.

The big question how ever is: Is that the kind of football that John Fox wan't the Denver Broncos to play. If Fox (and Elway) wants Tebow to be a polished pocket passer who takes good care of the football and doesn't take risks—then the Tebow experiment is going to fail.

John Fox (and John Elway) will have to tailor the offense to Tebow's strengths. In the fourth quarter of the Chargers game, we got another taste of what Tebow could possibly do.

In the words of Deion Sanders (a little modified), Tebow will never make it look pretty, but he has won at every level and he gives HOPE.

Now let's find out if Tebow has got what it takes to be an NFL QB.