The Most Overlooked Stories in the NFL Because of Tim Tebow
Tim Tebow has done it again, leading his Denver Broncos to a sixth consecutive victory. Their latest victim? The Chicago Bears, a team that had Tebow and Co. on the ropes until Marion Barber's miscues and the rest of the team's incompetence gave the Broncos more time than they should have had to set up a 59-yard field goal and force overtime.
An incredible story is developing in Denver. A team that was 2-5 and so bad it had to bench Kyle Orton has turned into a club that is three games above .500 and in the driver's seat to win the AFC West.
But the media has used "Tebow-mania" to push some of the best stories of the year to the wayside.
Dan Marino's single-season passing record could be broken by four quarterbacks, the rushing title is going to be handed to a running back that might finish with more yards than his rookie quarterback and a certain team from a certain Midwestern town might have the best chance to go undefeated since the New England Patriots lost (i.e. choked) in Super Bowl XLII.
Tebow deserves of a lot of credit and a lot of media attention. He went from certain Heisman bust to perennial Pro Bowl quarterback. But there's a lot more things happening in the NFL than Tebow winning six straight games.
With that said, I give you the most overlooked stories in the NFL—because of Tim Tebow.
Four Quarterbacks Could Break Dan Marino's Record
In 1984, Dan Marino threw for 5,084 yards—a record that has yet to be broken even in our present-day "pass first, pass second, pass third" league. Drew Brees came close a few seasons ago with 5,069 yards, but Marino's record is still king of the hill.
Until this year, that is.
The pass-first mentality has finally caught up to Dan Marino's record and there are four quarterbacks within arm's length of the record—Drew Brees (4,368), Tom Brady (4,273), Aaron Rodgers (4,125) and Eli Manning (4,105).
If even one of those quarterbacks can average a little more than 300 yards for the last three games, the record will fall.
Von Miller Has 11.5 Sacks
In 1999, Jevon Kearse showed why he was nicknamed "The Freak" in college, collecting 14.5 sacks as a rookie with the Tennessee Titans—a rookie record that holds to this day.
But with Tebow-mania, Von Miller's performance this season has been relegated to the back of many people's minds.
Check this out—through 13 games, Miller has 11.5 sacks. If he can get just 3.5 sacks in the last three games, he'll break the rookie record and go down as one of the best rookie linebackers in NFL history.
Maurice Jones-Drew to Win This Year's Rushing Title
The Jacksonville Jaguars are one of the biggest disappointments of 2011. In the last two weeks, they've benched their "quarterback of the future," canned their head football coach, sold the team and embarrassed fans all over the country with that "performance" against San Diego on Monday Night Football.
Oh, yea, and they've stumbled their way to a 4-9 record through 13 games—on pace for one of the worst seasons in franchise history.
But somehow, Pro Bowl running back Maurice Jones-Drew swallows his pride every Sunday morning, suits up and plays with more heart than half of the Jacksonville offense combined.
Through Week 14, Jones-Drew has rushed for a league-high 1,222 yards, caught for another 348 and is close to being the team's leader in yards (and that includes the quarterback).
Blaine Gabbert's only thrown for 1,783 yards. Jones-Drew has 1,570. That's impressive for Jones-Drew, but sad for everyone else.
The Jaguars running back will make the Pro Bowl this year and rush for more yards than any other back in the league. That's with nine defenders in the box nearly every play (because God knows the Jaguars aren't going to pass the ball).
Props to Jones-Drew for how hard he's worked this year.
Rob Gronkowski Breaks TD Record for Tight Ends
Despite his shenanigans off the field, New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski has proven that he is one of the receiving best tight ends of today and any day.
In last week's game against the Washington Redskins, Gronkowski caught his 14th and 15th touchdowns of the season. That's an NFL record for tight ends.
Now Gronkowski has three more games to add to that record and put it out of sight for future tight ends.
Green Bay Packers Earn Best Start in Franchise History
On the heels of Aaron Rodgers' record-setting performance this season (4,125 yards through 13 games), the Green Bay Packers have jumped out to an impressive 13-0 start to their season.
To put it in perspective, that's three games better than the best start a certain other quarterback who likes to wear real...comfortable...jeans ever put up for the Pack.
It's also more wins than the Tennessee Titans, Jacksonville Jaguars and Indianapolis Colts have combined this season.
Indianapolis Colts on Pace for Worst Season in Franchise History
In 1986, the Indianapolis Colts clawed their way to an 0-13 start before ending the season on a three-game winning streak and ending the season 3-13.
Why do I get the feeling this year's Colts aren't going to win any of their remaining games and go completely defeated for the first time in franchise history?
Their best chance to scratch out a win comes in the last game of the season against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Even though the Cardiac Cats from northeast Florida are bad, they're no pushovers.
It's been a miserable year for Colts fans this year. First, you lose Peyton Manning, then you have 51-year-old Kerry Collins under center. Then Curtis Painter gets the nod. Finally, Dan Orlovsky is sent in to salvage something from 2011.
The way the Colts have imploded this season is nothing short of remarkable and is one of the top stories in the NFL in 2011.
These are the stories I chose, but there's several others. What do you guys think?