NFL: Tim Tebow...The Right Player, Wrong Era?

Jonathan PowellContributor IIINovember 22, 2011

DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 17:  Quarterback Tim Tebow #15 of the Denver Broncos scrambles against the New York Jets at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on November 17, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Jets 17-13.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Tim Tebow.

He might be the most scrutinized quarterback in NFL history. 

Coming out of college, the rap on him was that he had poor throwing mechanics and was not accurate enough.  The critics said he shouldn't be a first round draft pick and would never develop into a NFL-caliber quarterback.  The man just strapped it on and worked hard to improve his mechanics, and ended up being selected by the Denver Broncos with the 25th overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft.

He gets to the NFL, the critics say his inability to read a defense and his run-first mentality would never translate into wins on the football field.  ESPN analyst Merril Hoge currently makes a living pointing out Tebow's inadequacies.

In two seasons, Tebow has started in eight games and is 5-3...the last time I checked that was a winning record.

Now the critics say "yeah, he's winning, but he's winning ugly."  It's almost humorous how hard some people work to try and take something away from this guy.

Does it really matter if a win is ugly or pretty?  I've never heard the expression "bad win" before. A win is a win.

By that standard, most of the greatest football games in history are "bad wins."  The Immaculate Reception...ugly.  Montana to Clark...lucky.  "The band is on the field!" game...they really let that slide?

The truth is Tebow is just a hard nosed player that works hard on and off the field, and just knows how to win and will do whatever it takes to do so.  That type of behavior isn't celebrated much in the sports world of today.

Tebow would have fit fine in previous eras of professional football.  Jim Brown would have loved him.  Dick Butkus might have even shook his hand after a game.  Tebow is the definition of a throwback player.

In the current money motivated era of sports, most players, to quote Woody Harrelson's Billy Hoyle character from the 1992 motion picture White Men Can't Jump, "would rather look good first, and win second."  Tebow is quite the opposite.

Is it really more of a testament towards a player's testicular fortitude if they holdout to become the highest paid "playmaker" and under perform, rather than a player leaving everything out on the field every Sunday?

In my opinion, Tebow has a higher level of respect for the game of football than most players in the league do.  So what if he's not the "prototypical quarterback?" Right now he's winning, and isn't that all that really matters at the end of the day?

Cut the kid some slack.  He already knows he will never be the next Dan Marino, Joe Montana, or John Elway; he's already too busy doing a decent job being the first Tim Tebow.