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Friday, December 16, 2011

WEEI: Adrian Gonzalez says Tim Tebow ‘doing things the right way’

Adrian Gonzalez has picked his team for this Sunday’s showdown between Bill Belichick’s boys and the Broncos.

“I’m actually rooting for the Patriots because the Broncos need to lose three in a row and the Chargers need to win three in a row to get into the playoffs,” said the San Diego native, and Red Sox first baseman. “I’m rooting for [Tim] Tebow to have a great game, but the Chargers need some help.”

Truth be told, it’s rare for Gonzalez to root for the Patriots. But it’s not rare for him to cheer for Tebow.

“I always keep track of how he’s doing,” said Gonzalez via phone. “I think everything that’s going on, if you just turn on TV or sports radio, he’s being talked about, which is great. I followed him in college, also. Personally, I’m the type of person who prefers to watch a Tom Brady-type of game, but Tebow is a guy I’m always going to follow and wish the best for him and pray he continues to do well and stay healthy.”

...Gonzalez has never met Tebow, although the quarterback did visit the Sox’ first baseman’s church in San Diego recently. Still, Gonzalez still feels a kinship to his football-playing counterpart. Both are living what can be a challenging existence—Christians in the middle of a professional sports environment.

Praise be Fadda Barnald.

Repoz Posted: December 16, 2011 at 10:33 AM | 112 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: fantasy baseball, red sox

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   1. Greg K Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:38 AM (#4017603)
Speaking of cross-sport brotherhood, Toronto Maple Leafs Colby Armstrong and Tyler Bozak have joined Jays JP Arencibia and Brett Lawrie in something called "Team-Unit".

Team-Unit

Whenever I see them interviewed about it I always get the impression that there's some kind of inside joke going on.
   2. tfbg9 Posted: December 16, 2011 at 01:27 PM (#4017626)
Not about baseball, about thread hits for Same Swing.
   3. zack Posted: December 16, 2011 at 03:04 PM (#4017694)
Both are living what can be a challenging existence—Christians in the middle of a professional sports environment.



What the #### is this ####?

Ask Chris Truby about a challenging religious life.
   4. zack Posted: December 16, 2011 at 03:10 PM (#4017697)
Or hell, any Jewish player that has to face the damned if you do, damned if you don't new year dance.
   5. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 03:34 PM (#4017711)
Both are living what can be a challenging existence—Christians in the middle of a professional sports environment.


What the #### is this ####?


I think the point is not about being a nominal Christian, but being an observant one among the temptations of the professional-athlete lifestyle.
   6. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: December 16, 2011 at 03:42 PM (#4017717)
Both are living what can be a challenging existence—Christians in the middle of a professional sports environment.

At one point in the late 90's, 22 out of the 25 players on the Texas Rangers roster, plus their manager Johnny Oates, were self-proclaimed "born again" Christians. Groups like Fellowship of Christian Athletes, with its 600 paid employees, have been around for nearly 60 years The idea that "Christians" are some sort of a beleaguered minority in Jockworld is just laughable, and the fact that most of them don't practice what they preach when the camera's not on them doesn't negate that.

Not that this has much or anything to do with Tebow, who's got the usual right wing social beliefs but at least doesn't go around knocking up his fanettes. If all the Christian jocks were like him, we'd be bored but not scandalized.
   7. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 03:46 PM (#4017721)
I think #3 and #6 are right, although there is at times the perception that born-again Christians are "soft". I guess I'm recalling the "milk and cookies" comment made by Tony Muser regarding Mike Sweeney. Its far from a challenging existence though.

He's really what a guy who loves Jesus is supposed to be doing.


And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. And for Pete's sake, don't go Tebowing.
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 03:51 PM (#4017726)
The idea that "Christians" are some sort of a beleaguered minority in Jockworld is just laughable, and the fact that most of them don't practice what they preach when the camera's not on them doesn't negate that.

But, I don't think Gonzalez is saying he's a beleaguered minority, he's simply saying 1) A Christian is supposed to spread his faith,

"In our faith, that's what we're here on Earth to do, is pass the rod, talk about Jesus and spread the good news about him. We should be more outspoken about it. I think he's going to bring out a lot of new players who have that faith who have been keeping it to themselves because of being scared by the public scrutiny. They're going to be more outspoken about it now."



At the end of the day, it's a shame on everyone, including myself, for not being more outspoken about it


which is a hard, and often unpopular thing to do, and 2) it is hard to follow Christian values in the world of professional athletics,

"It can be," said Gonzalez when asked if it was difficult to live a Christian existence as a major leaguer. "I think at the end of the day it comes to how strong your faith is. When I first became a believer it was pretty difficult to stay grounded and not fall into what people were saying, or what people were doing, or what they wanted out of me. But over the years you grow into your faith and you realize it doesn't matter what people say or do or talk about you. All that matters is what Jesus thinks about you and how God feels. If you were to die at this minute, how would you be taken into Heaven? It's all about perspective. As you grow in your Christian faith, it isn't about what people say, it's about how God wants you to be."


and not fall into the obvious temptations.
   9. . Posted: December 16, 2011 at 03:59 PM (#4017732)
1) A Christian is supposed to spread his faith,

"Supposed to" based on what, and for what purpose? Christians aren't required to proselytize, and score no extra points with God for doing so. (Not that the path to heaven and eternal life is based on what you do here, beyond believing, anyway).

and not fall into the obvious temptations.

Nor does the essence of Christianity have anything to do with resisting temptation. Jocko-Christianity and Politico-Christianity are schismatic pseudo-strains of the real thing.
   10. The Long Arm of Rudy Law Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:05 PM (#4017734)
It's a good thing God gave Tebow's teammates enough talent and frequent luck to cover the fact that they don't have a good quarterback. Some of those teammates were assembled by John Elway, which proves Elway is some kind of supreme being and Cleveland is hell.
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:07 PM (#4017735)
"Supposed to" based on what, and for what purpose? Christians aren't required to proselytize, and score no extra points with God for doing so. (Not that the path to heaven and eternal life is based on what you do here, beyond believing, anyway).

Nor does the essence of Christianity have anything to do with resisting temptation.

Pardon?

Is this Christianity according to SBB? Because pretty much every Christian denomination disagrees with you.
   12. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:14 PM (#4017745)
I was always taught growing up in Catholic school that we should share our faith with others. I don't do it and very few people truly do but I was always taught to do so.

I normally don't care for outward shows of faith, they feel contrived. Tebow strikes me as someone who is sincere in what he does though. Maybe I'll be proven wrong, I've seen too many "holier than thou" athletes run afoul of their faith over the years to be surprised but that's my take on Tebow.
   13. Joey B. is counting the days to Trea Turner Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:14 PM (#4017746)
I'm chuckling right now thinking about how many heads around America are going to explode if the Broncos actually beat the Patriots on Sunday.

It's probably not going to happen, and I certainly wouldn't bet on it to happen, but if it does, oh man would that be something.
   14. . Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:15 PM (#4017751)
Is this Christianity according to SBB? Because pretty much every Christian denomination disagrees with you.

The Bible contains some ethical teachings -- which go well beyond merely "resisting temptation," and God's grace reigns over sinners anyway.

They aren't the essence of Christianity, which is salvation and eternal life for believers.
   15. Swoboda is freedom Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:16 PM (#4017752)
Tim Tebow ‘doing things the right way’

Except when it comes to throwing the football. He doesn't seem to be too good at that.
   16. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:24 PM (#4017759)
The Bible contains some ethical teachings -- which go well beyond merely "resisting temptation," and God's grace reigns over sinners anyway.

They aren't the essence of Christianity, which is salvation and eternal life for believers.


Sure, but you have to avoid serious sin, which involves resisting temptation, and do good works (e.g. Christ's description of the Last Judgement, "When I was hungry, and you gave me to eat...".

Unless, you believe in hard-core Calvinism.
   17. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:41 PM (#4017782)
I'm chuckling right now thinking about how many heads around America are going to explode if the Broncos actually beat the Patriots on Sunday.

It's probably not going to happen, and I certainly wouldn't bet on it to happen, but if it does, oh man would that be something.


Whether or not the Broncos' defense can hold the Patriots under 40 points is open to question, but Tebow certainly should be able to put up more than his typical 17 points against one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL. Christ, Rex ####### Grossman was one muffed pass away from getting 34 points out of the Redskins against that defense just 6 days ago.
   18. Completely Unbiased 3rd Party Lurker Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:54 PM (#4017795)
Sure, but you have to avoid serious sin, which involves resisting temptation, and do good works (e.g. Christ's description of the Last Judgement, "When I was hungry, and you gave me to eat..."


No, you don't. That was the whole point of Jesus. Jesus absolved all of our sins. All of them. Believing in Jesus and asking for forgiveness is enough. Of course, if you really believe in Jesus and listen to his messages, then you will try your hardest to live a life for God's glory, which means trying your best to avoid all sin. You'll fail, because you're human and imperfect, but trying is enough.
   19. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:54 PM (#4017796)
And for Pete's sake, don't go Tebowing.


Damn all these new translations.

Whether or not the Broncos' defense can hold the Patriots under 40 points is open to question, but Tebow certainly should be able to put up more than his typical 17 points against one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL.


One thing I'm fairly certain of is that if the Pats defense does manage to contain the Broncos for three and a half quarters, Belichick won't suddenly switch to a scheme designed to concede all the things that Tebow is good at.
   20. Zonk qualifies as an invasive species Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:54 PM (#4017797)
Well, my contrarianism has gotten the best of me --

I think I'm more on Tebow's side than the inverse... Yeah - I know he tends to be awful for 50 minutes. Yeah - I find 'Tebowing' annoying. Yeah - I know he's actually beaten some mediocre to awful teams who also happened to be in the midst of serious funks/other issues.

Anyway - not a big NFL fan - but did watch the Bears-Broncos and stuck around for his post-game interview and I'll say this... Beyond the what I imagine is his standard preface about lord and savior, his post-game comments were very gracious to his teammates - including naming names, not just cliched "line/defense/etc" - and seemed like pretty run of the mill stuff. It's not like he spent the whole interview talking about god causing fumbles or anything.

I mean - so luck and competition have played a role in what everyone has to admit is a pretty amazing string of comebacks. So he's the proselytizing type straight out of Jesus camp. So he somehow looks absolutely lost for 3 quarters before appearing serviceable or better in the 4th.

Again - not an NFL fan - but I guess I'm just not quite comprehending the animosity that seems to head in his direction.

Goody-goody QB who seems to have more than his fair share going for him... Gee - how is that any different than Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, John Elway, etc (beyond yeah - even a non-NFL fan like me can see he's just not as good a raw QB as those guys)?

Not saying I'm a fan or anything, but I'm just puzzled by the froth so many folks seem to work themselves into to go after the guy... I'm at best a hopeful agnostic, but so long as the guy isn't running for office or dragging me out of bed against my free will on a Sunday morning, knock yourself out, kid.
   21. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:58 PM (#4017803)
No, you don't. That was the whole point of Jesus. Jesus absolved all of our sins. All of them. Believing in Jesus and asking for forgiveness is enough. Of course, if you really believe in Jesus and listen to his messages, then you will try your hardest to live a life for God's glory, which means trying your best to avoid all sin. You'll fail, because you're human and imperfect, but trying is enough.

Asking for forgiveness means you have to intend to "Go and sin no more", unless you're planning on an exquisitely timed death-bed confession.

Jesus did not "absolve" our sins, he paid the price for them so we could be forgiven. We still have to believe, ask forgiveness, and repent of our sinful ways to be actually forgiven.
   22. Nasty Nate Posted: December 16, 2011 at 04:58 PM (#4017804)
Whether or not the Broncos' defense can hold the Patriots under 40 points is open to question, but Tebow certainly should be able to put up more than his typical 17 points against one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL.


I think this is actually a good matchup for the Pat's defense. Their weakness is stopping a passing offense, which is not Denver's strength.

I'm chuckling right now thinking about how many heads around America are going to explode if the Broncos actually beat the Patriots on Sunday.


Really? I wouldn't be shocked if Denver wins, and I wasn't under the impression that the general public would be.
   23. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:03 PM (#4017809)
Tebow may not be a very good quarterback but more importantly, he is not a bad quarterback. The number of NFL QBs that should be expected to win you a game are pretty few; Rodgers, Brady, Brees, that's about it. There are a few more that can win you a game but are equally likely to give a game away with dumb interceptions; Rivers, Eli to name a couple and just about everyone else is just trying to avoid screwing up.

Tebow isn't going to dominate anyone but he has the lowest interception rate in the NFL and with that defense that's going to be enough on a lot of days. When you force your opponent to have to 65-70 yards every possession, it's the equivalent of retiring the leadoff batter every inning, it's not a guarantee but it's an important first step.
   24. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:05 PM (#4017810)
I'm just puzzled by the froth so many folks seem to work themselves into to go after the guy...


Skip Bayless is ready to give him a bust in Canton already. That should explain about 97% of the froth right there.
   25. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:07 PM (#4017813)
Tebow isn't going to dominate anyone but he has the lowest interception rate in the NFL and with that defense that's going to be enough on a lot of days. When you force your opponent to have to 65-70 yards every possession, it's the equivalent of retiring the leadoff batter every inning, it's not a guarantee but it's an important first step.

Boswell made that same point in his Post column today. It's going to be a game worth watching.
   26. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:09 PM (#4017817)

I think I'm more on Tebow's side than the inverse... Yeah - I know he tends to be awful for 50 minutes. Yeah - I find 'Tebowing' annoying. Yeah - I know he's actually beaten some mediocre to awful teams who also happened to be in the midst of serious funks/other issues.

Anyway - not a big NFL fan - but did watch the Bears-Broncos and stuck around for his post-game interview and I'll say this... Beyond the what I imagine is his standard preface about lord and savior, his post-game comments were very gracious to his teammates - including naming names, not just cliched "line/defense/etc" - and seemed like pretty run of the mill stuff. It's not like he spent the whole interview talking about god causing fumbles or anything.


I'm a Chiefs fan, so I have to hate Tebow, but I like different styles of football, and you have to admit Tebow is different. He's definitely good for the league.

I definitely differ from the guy on religion and politics, but I like athletes who are willing to speak their mind as to what they're passionate about, even if its on stuff I disagree with. Except for Curt Schilling. Tebow is a bit refreshing in his candor and sincerity.
   27. Joey B. is counting the days to Trea Turner Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:21 PM (#4017828)
Really? I wouldn't be shocked if Denver wins, and I wasn't under the impression that the general public would be.

I wouldn't be SHOCKED, but I would be pretty surprised.

The Vegas books currently have the Patriots favored by anywhere from 6.5 to 7.5, and personally that seems just about right to me (I like 6.5 a hell of a lot better than I like 7.5). The Patriots are pretty obviously the better team, and they SHOULD win the game. But the Broncos have been stunning people for weeks now, and it's in Denver, so I wouldn't call it a lock by any means.
   28. Srul Itza Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:30 PM (#4017834)
For a more reasoned and informed commentary on Tebow:

If Tebow wins the Super Bowl, against all odds, it will buoy his faithful, and emboldened faithful can do insane things, like burning mosques, bashing gays and indiscriminately banishing immigrants. While America has become more inclusive since Jerry Falwell’s first political forays, a Tebow triumph could set those efforts back considerably.
   29. TVerik, who wonders what the hell is "Ansky" Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:32 PM (#4017837)
I'm not an NFL guy, but could somebody please explain to me a "Tom Brady-type of game"?
   30. Joey B. is counting the days to Trea Turner Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:35 PM (#4017841)
Yeah, the Jewish Week made the eminently sensible decision to pull Rabbi Hammerman's little hate-filled diatribe from the site yesterday, though I think it may still be on his personal blog.

Personally, I can't believe they ever put such garbage on their site in the first place. What the heck were they thinking?
   31. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:36 PM (#4017842)
I'm not an NFL guy, but could somebody please explain to me a "Tom Brady-type of game"?


I assume he means a true drop back throw from the pocket type who throws for big yards.
   32. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:38 PM (#4017843)
What the heck were they thinking?


Why do we always assume that there was any thinking involved when this sort of #### shows up in print or online?
   33. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:40 PM (#4017845)
Personally, I can't believe they ever put such garbage on their site in the first place. What the heck were they thinking?


This happens fairly easily with religious or political organizations. Something that seems logical when said to a group of "true believers" doesn't get the sort of critical review it needs before it hits the airwaves/bandwidth/papers and by then it's too late. This is true whether the group is righty, lefty, religious, agnostic, whatever. If no one involved in the process from production to dissemination has a differing viewpoint you lose perspective.
   34. staring out the window and waiting for fenderbelly Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:51 PM (#4017859)
I stuck with the Jeter thread all the way through - in part for the debate but most for the jokes ("What about the poor guy that got a Derek Jeter signed ball for his birthday? - Walt" HA!). I understand that not every thread is for everyone and I will be staying out of this.

But ########, BTF is really moralistic and uptight all of a sudden. Are the holidays stressing you out? Spring training cannot come soon enough...
   35. Tom Nawrocki Posted: December 16, 2011 at 05:56 PM (#4017863)
People forget that in 1985, there were two NFL teams that got off to white-hot starts - not just the consensus Greatest Team of All Time Chicago Bears, but the L.A. Rams started 7-0 as well. Whereas the Bears were mauling people, the Rams were winning close games, which led a friend of mine to tell me he thought the Rams were better than the Bears, because they Knew How to Win, or something like that.

These Broncos remind me of those Rams. As it turned out, the Bears were much better than the Rams, who finished 4-5 after that 7-0 start and got blown out by the Bears in the playoffs. It's great when a team Knows How to Win, but it's even better when a team Knows How to Maul People. On Sunday, the Broncos will be facing by far the best offense they've faced in their winning streak, and I suspect they're due for a mauling.
   36. . Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:05 PM (#4017873)
Jesus is giving the points.
   37. Boxkutter Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:06 PM (#4017874)
Tebow may not be a very good quarterback but more importantly, he is not a bad quarterback.


Actually, yes he is. You can't quote his low interception rate and use that to say he isn't a bad quarterback. He is also last in completion percentage. He is last in YPG Passing, and even if you added in his rushing YPG, he would still be dead last. A QB should be able to move the ball. Tebow can't do that. The reason Denver is winning games is not because of Tebow's offense, it is because of Denver's defense and special teams.
   38. Greg K Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:12 PM (#4017878)
I was about to say, he sounds like the Trent Dilfer model. Not very good, but he won't throw the ball away and kill you. But in looking him up Dilfer looks like he threw more than his share of picks. He just wasn't especially good at anything was he?

EDIT: Dilfer's first full season, 1995.
16 starts, 7-9
4 TD, 18 INT

I don't really know much about football stats, but that seems bad.
   39. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:13 PM (#4017880)

People forget that in 1985, there were two NFL teams that got off to white-hot starts - not just the consensus Greatest Team of All Time Chicago Bears, but the L.A. Rams started 7-0 as well. Whereas the Bears were mauling people, the Rams were winning close games, which led a friend of mine to tell me he thought the Rams were better than the Bears, because they Knew How to Win, or something like that.


It should also be pointed out that the Broncos have only beaten three teams with a winning record this year - two under Tebow (Jets and Raiders).
   40. Joey B. is counting the days to Trea Turner Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:18 PM (#4017883)
ESPN's Total Quarterback Rating has him ranked 30th out of 34 on the season, so yeah, he's been pretty bad.

About the only things you can say in his defense right now are that he's young, and so there's at least the possibility he could get better, and that he's not exactly playing with a bunch of great weapons around him. Eric Decker isn't exactly my idea of a true #1 NFL wide receiver.
   41. . Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:18 PM (#4017884)
But in looking him up Dilfer looks like he threw more than his share of picks. He just wasn't especially good at anything was he?

Not really, although in the fundamental quarterbacking act of dropping back, setting your feet, and throwing quickly and accurately to your target, he was much better than Tim Tebow.

Jesus frowns upon quarterbacks with a 48.5% completion rate, regardless of how vociferously they kiss His ass. The Tebow rapture will come crashing down (or, more likely, end with a whimper) relatively soon.

Thank God.
   42. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:22 PM (#4017892)
In the bar I was at ESPN was showing a stat where Tebow had a QB rating of 90 or something like that in the fourth quarter. Is there something fundamental that happens in the fourth quarter to make him better? Is his skill set (all the running around and improv) well suited to facing a fatigued defense late in a game or do the Broncos run their offense differently late in games? If it's the latter, why don't they run that offense throughout the game?
   43. Kurt Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:26 PM (#4017893)
It should also be pointed out that the Broncos have only beaten three teams with a winning record this year - two under Tebow (Jets and Raiders).

"Only"? For a non-elite team three such wins sounds pretty good, especially given that it's actually four (Bears).
   44. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:29 PM (#4017898)
It should also be pointed out that the Broncos have only beaten three teams with a winning record this year - two under Tebow (Jets and Raiders).


"Only"? For a non-elite team three such wins sounds pretty good, especially given that it's actually four (Bears).

But all three of those teams were either in a funk or injury-riddled when they played the Broncos. In fact their "best" win came against the then-pretty good Bengals in week 2. New England is really their first true test since then.
   45. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:30 PM (#4017899)
Is there something fundamental that happens in the fourth quarter to make him better?


Yes. His team is behind and the opposing team starts playing extra DBs way off the line which allows Tebow to run the ball down their throats. No one seems to have figured out that when you're trying to protect a late lead against Denver, the correct "prevent defense" is eight men in the box, because they don't have the ability to beat even average DBs in man-to-man coverage.
   46. Guapo Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:32 PM (#4017903)
Is there something fundamental that happens in the fourth quarter to make him better?


Well, it's Sunday. Earlier in the day, God is busy dealing with churchgoers, listening to prayers, hymns, etc. As the day drags on and services wrap up, He has more free time and He can dedicate more effort to helping Tebow.
   47. The Good Face Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:33 PM (#4017904)
In the bar I was at ESPN was showing a stat where Tebow had a QB rating of 90 or something like that in the fourth quarter. Is there something fundamental that happens in the fourth quarter to make him better? Is his skill set (all the running around and improv) well suited to facing a fatigued defense late in a game or do the Broncos run their offense differently late in games? If it's the latter, why don't they run that offense throughout the game?


Easterbrook over at ESPN argued that the Bronco running game is wearing opponents down, so that Tebow's 4th quarter magic is actually the result of him taking advantage of exhausted defenders. Could be true, could be a just-so story, or could be somewhere in between.
   48. Randy Jones Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:36 PM (#4017905)
Easterbrook over at ESPN argued that the Bronco running game is wearing opponents down, so that Tebow's 4th quarter magic is actually the result of him taking advantage of exhausted defenders. Could be true, could be a just-so story, or could be somewhere in between.


If Gregggggggggggggggg Easterbrook said it, it is almost certainly wrong. Seriously, if you want a primer on how to misuse stats, read a TMQ article.

Also, #45 seems to be correct, especially in the case of the Bears game.
   49. RMc Has Bizarre Ideas to Fix Baseball Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:36 PM (#4017907)
Rabbi Joshua Hammerman wrote the other day that he was rather concerned with Tebow and his success:

If Tebow wins the Super Bowl, against all odds, it will buoy his faithful, and emboldened faithful can do insane things, like burning mosques, bashing gays and indiscriminately banishing immigrants. While America has become more inclusive since Jerry Falwell?’s first political forays, a Tebow triumph could set those efforts back considerably.


This caused such an uproar that it was almost immediately deleted from the Jewish Week website, and the rabbi apologized.

Let one thing be known: only one team, my team, the Detroit Lions, has defeated the hated Tebow this year, thus keeping mosques from being burned, gays from being bashed, and kept immigrants completely unbanished. Only. The. Lions.

Ahhh, it feels good.
   50. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:36 PM (#4017908)
#42, one theory is that running plays are harder on the defense, particularly when the QB is also a running threat. So by the 4th quarter against the run-heavy Broncos, the defense is more tired than in an average.

I'm not an NFL fan, so I'm not sure if the Broncos or their opponents run different schemes in the 4th quarter.

EDIT: too late.
   51. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:40 PM (#4017912)

ESPN's Total Quarterback Rating has him ranked 30th out of 34 on the season, so yeah, he's been pretty bad.


Is that a good rating system? I have no idea, I was wondering if Football Outsiders or someone had dissected it.

Yes. His team is behind and the opposing team starts playing extra DBs way off the line which allows Tebow to run the ball down their throats. No one seems to have figured out that when you're trying to protect a late lead against Denver, the correct "prevent defense" is eight men in the box, because they don't have the ability to beat even average DBs in man-to-man coverage.


I think Tebow is actually pretty decent on the deep ball, he just sucks at the 10-15 yard passes and he's even surprisingly crappy on screens and three yard outs. But a 50 yard fly pattern? He gets it pretty close to the receivers hands most of the time, and if he doesn't, he doesn't put himself in a position to get it picked off.

But you're right, teams inexplicably go to prevent defense, playing off the receivers, and he suddenly becomes good at hitting open receivers from 10-15 yards away.


"Only"? For a non-elite team three such wins sounds pretty good, especially given that it's actually four (Bears).


My bad. Still, one of those teams had a backup QB playing (Caleb Hanie), one had a QB playing his second game with the organization and he threw three picks (Carson Palmer), one was against a QB playing his second NFL game, although he has played well (Andy Dalton) and one was a QB who seems to be in a funk (Mark Sanchez).

Not discounting what they've done, and you play the schedule your given, just saying I don't give them much chance of success in the playoffs against good teams with good QBs.
   52. Lassus Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:41 PM (#4017914)
Raised catholic and employed by many churches as an adult, i find religion generally abhorrent.

That being said, I'm rooting for Tebow as it is hilarious to see all these NFL "experts" twisting in the wind.
   53. Tom Nawrocki Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:43 PM (#4017916)
But all three of those teams were either in a funk or injury-riddled when they played the Broncos.


All three of those teams were missing their No. 1 running backs (although the Raiders' No. 2 played very well). The Jets were also missing their No. 2 running back, and the Bears were of course missing their starting QB as well.
   54. Yardape Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:48 PM (#4017924)
But you're right, teams inexplicably go to prevent defense, playing off the receivers, and he suddenly becomes good at hitting open receivers from 10-15 yards away.


Further evidence is that Tebow's QBR plummets again in overtime, when presumably teams go back to normal defence. (Four of Tebow's starts have gone into OT, all of which the Broncos have won.)
   55. Kurt Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:50 PM (#4017926)
But all three of those teams were either in a funk or injury-riddled when they played the Broncos. In fact their "best" win came against the then-pretty good Bengals in week 2. New England is really their first true test since then.

Sure, just like the Jets were their first true test. Green Bay also has very few wins against teams with winning records, once you make excuses and hand-wave away the teams they did beat.
   56. Joey B. is counting the days to Trea Turner Posted: December 16, 2011 at 06:51 PM (#4017927)
Is that a good rating system?

It is fairly new and probably needs more time and analysis, but from what I see so far, it looks a lot better to me than Passer Rating.
   57. Kurt Posted: December 16, 2011 at 07:04 PM (#4017934)
one had a QB playing his second game with the organization and he threw three picks (Carson Palmer)

Come on, this is total BS. Palmer also threw for 330 yards and 3 touchdowns in that game. The first interception was returned to Denver's 15 yard line. The second was on 3rd and 11, and may as well have been an incompletion and a shanked punt. The third was in the last minute of the game, after it was already 38-24 Denver.

just saying I don't give them much chance of success in the playoffs against good teams with good QBs.

For the record, I also don't expect a team that was 4-12 last year and 2-5 this year B.T. to beat a 12-4 team in the playoffs.
   58. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: December 16, 2011 at 07:06 PM (#4017935)
But all three of those teams were either in a funk or injury-riddled when they played the Broncos. In fact their "best" win came against the then-pretty good Bengals in week 2. New England is really their first true test since then.

Sure, just like the Jets were their first true test. Green Bay also has very few wins against teams with winning records, once you make excuses and hand-wave away the teams they did beat.


Well, one of those teams that they beat----by 49 to 23----was the Broncos. Tebow may be better than his stats indicate (and he's been very good at minimizing turnovers), but what he and the Broncos are doing right now is the equivalent of a baseball team winning six straight extra inning games. You can try to find all kinds of tea leaves in a streak like that, but the chances of its continuing are pretty slim, especially against better teams.
   59. Kurt Posted: December 16, 2011 at 07:20 PM (#4017944)
Well, one of those teams that they beat----by 49 to 23----was the Broncos.

The Broncos were in a funk. Next.

Tebow may be better than his stats indicate (and he's been very good at minimizing turnovers), but what he and the Broncos are doing right now is the equivalent of a baseball team winning six straight extra inning games. You can try to find all kinds of tea leaves in a streak like that, but the chances of its continuing are pretty slim, especially against better teams.

I don't disagree with any of that, but we may as well be accurate about what's happened up to this point.
   60. rombuu Posted: December 16, 2011 at 07:25 PM (#4017949)
Let one thing be known: only one team, my team, the Detroit Lions, has defeated the hated Tebow this year, thus keeping mosques from being burned, gays from being bashed, and kept immigrants completely unbanished. Only. The. Lions.


Well, Lions and Christians are traditionally never on the same side anyway...
   61. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: December 16, 2011 at 09:21 PM (#4018046)
Well, Lions and Christians are traditionally never on the same side anyway...

*golf clap*
   62. Srul Itza Posted: December 16, 2011 at 09:30 PM (#4018053)
Rabbi Joshua Hammerman wrote the other day that he was rather concerned with Tebow and his success:


So I take it you have me on ignore, and did not read No. 28.

Of course, if you have me on ignore, you won't read this, either.
   63. Srul Itza Posted: December 16, 2011 at 09:35 PM (#4018056)
All three of those teams were missing their No. 1 running backs (although the Raiders' No. 2 played very well). The Jets were also missing their No. 2 running back, and the Bears were of course missing their starting QB as well.


Proof, yet again, that God really is on Tebow's side, striking down and weakening Tebow's adversaries before he has to face them.
   64. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 09:37 PM (#4018059)
striking down and weakening Tebow's adversaries before he has to face them.

I believe "smiting" is the word you're looking for.
   65. Dale Sams Posted: December 16, 2011 at 09:43 PM (#4018066)
"AGON retires to spread faith and build shelters in Africa!"

"Athiests the new market inefficiency!"
   66. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 16, 2011 at 09:53 PM (#4018075)
I believe "smiting" is the word you're looking for.


Is that the lamentation of their women that I hear in the distance?
   67. DA Baracus Posted: December 16, 2011 at 09:56 PM (#4018078)
Is that a good rating system?


It tries to make adjustments for situations but makes no adjustment for the opponent, which makes it as useless as regular passer rating.

Still, one of those teams had a backup QB playing (Caleb Hanie), one had a QB playing his second game with the organization and he threw three picks (Carson Palmer), one was against a QB playing his second NFL game, although he has played well (Andy Dalton) and one was a QB who seems to be in a funk (Mark Sanchez).


Mark Sanchez was not in a funk. He was who he is: a mediocre QB.
   68. villageidiom Posted: December 16, 2011 at 10:28 PM (#4018110)
I'm chuckling right now thinking about how many heads around America are going to explode if the Broncos actually beat the Patriots on Sunday.

It's probably not going to happen, and I certainly wouldn't bet on it to happen, but if it does, oh man would that be something.
For those who wonder why the froth about Tebow, the above quote is a perfect counterexample. (Nothing wrong with what you said, Joey; I'm not trying to pick on you.)

Across America, there are lots of people who irrationally love the Patriots. And they're pretty loud about it. It's not just the fans, but the media. (The sports-related media loves them some Patriots, the NFL-related media loves them some Bill Belichick, and the gossip-related media loves them some Tom Brady.) The Patriots don't make a big show out of their success, they just go out and do their damn job; but everyone else around them just won't shut up about how perfect they are. The Broncos winning would be like a slap across their collective face and a loud "Bite me!" in their collective ear.

Across America, there are lots of people who irrationally love Tim Tebow. And they're pretty loud about it. It's not just the fans, but the media. Tebow doesn't make a big show out of his success, he just goes out and does his damn job; but everyone else around him just won't shut up about how favored by God he is. The Patriots winning would be like a slap across their collective face and a loud "Bite me!" in their collective ear.

That's it in a nutshell. The majority of blather and hope for this game is centered around getting a large segment of irrational people to just shut up already.
   69. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: December 16, 2011 at 10:35 PM (#4018114)
Yeah, it's like sporting events have to be turned into surrogate culture wars. I blame Dick Young and Muhammad Ali.
   70. Bruce Markusen Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:12 PM (#4018141)
I don't see it as irrational love of Tebow. He was a great college player, his NFL team is winning, he is seemingly well liked by his teammates and coaches. Oh, and he happens to be devout in his religion, a trait that a lot of people actually admire. It's not irrational at all.
   71. valuearbitrageur Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:16 PM (#4018145)
I think the point is not about being a nominal Christian, but being an observant one among the temptations of the professional-athlete lifestyle.


Unlike Tim Tebow, the "virgin" who allegedly is getting a little too much Lindsey Vonn

1) A Christian is supposed to spread his faith,

"Supposed to" based on what, and for what purpose?


So the church leaders can drive mercedes. Duh.
   72. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:20 PM (#4018149)
Eli Manning has six fourth-quarter comeback wins this season and has actually won a super bowl in the past. Yet he gets less attention than Tebow despite playing in the biggest media market in the country. So yes, it absolutely is irrational.
   73. Joe Bivens, Slack Rumped Rutabaga Head Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:28 PM (#4018152)
4. zack Posted: December 16, 2011 at 10:10 AM (#4017697)
Or hell, any Jewish player that has to face the damned if you do, damned if you don't new year dance.


Wrong holiday, but ok.
   74. Ron J Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:33 PM (#4018153)
The weird thing about Tebow is that in those 4th quarter comebacks he really does look like a good NFL quarterback. In particular throwing well while running to his left (something unusual in the NFL). There are a lot of throws he just can't make, but he doesn't even seem to attempt them on those drives (and while they have been lucky to be in a position to try to drive the football with the game on the line -- they should have been closed out in at least 3 of the wins -- you can't really call the drives lucky)

But he looks just awful (and I've seen more awful quarterbacks than most -- I reffed touch football for years and the lower divisions can be truly amazing) for so much of the game. No idea what that means -- now or for the future. I suspect it means he'll be starting for somebody as long as he stays healthy.

At least he basically contains the damage in the first 3 quarters.
   75. Drew (Primakov, Gungho Iguanas) Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:42 PM (#4018161)
I love how people worship Tebow when it's the defense and system winning the games.

I actually kinda like him for sticking to his guns; it's the brainless clowns gobbling his crank every week that are asses. I want his team to get blown out just so the fools will shut up.
   76. Ron J Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:53 PM (#4018166)
#75 Second the motion. Though they won't shut up until there's an extended run of terrible results. (and maybe not even then)
   77. DA Baracus Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:54 PM (#4018171)
In particular throwing well while running to his left (something unusual in the NFL).


It's unusual because most QBs are right handed and thus run to the right. Tebow is a southpaw.
   78. Lars6788 Posted: December 17, 2011 at 12:12 AM (#4018178)
I can imagine if Cam Newton was having the team success Tebow was having [but not seemingly having the passing ability] - most of the NFL fans in Tebow's jock would be saying how Newton is still an athlete playing QB and that he can't compete with the true quality quarterbacks in the league.

To hear the hype about Tebow makes him seem like a little bit of Elway and maybe Steve Young rolled into one super human being.
   79. Lassus Posted: December 17, 2011 at 12:19 AM (#4018183)
I actually kinda like him for sticking to his guns; it's the brainless clowns gobbling his crank every week that are asses. I want his team to get blown out just so the fools will shut up.

I find it bewildering and almost hallucinatory that you can say he's been getting fellated by the press. NFL people all over everywhere have been saying he's terrible up until today. Just because they are all TALKING about him is not the same as them all saying he's Dan freaking Marino. It maybe has reached 50/50 now, after all these games, between "good" and "terrible".

Honestly, this is why I want him to win, because it annoys both the professional an amateur people who REALLY KNOW WHAT'S GOING ON. It is very satisfying, and I don't even follow football. I have no idea even which league any of the teams are in, but THIS Tebow #### is damned entertaining.
   80. Drew (Primakov, Gungho Iguanas) Posted: December 17, 2011 at 12:32 AM (#4018187)
I find it bewildering and almost hallucinatory that you can say he's been getting fellated by the press.


I find it bewildering that you think the press *isn't* fellating him.
   81. DA Baracus Posted: December 17, 2011 at 12:32 AM (#4018188)
I find it bewildering and almost hallucinatory that you can say he's been getting fellated by the press.


The media love talking about Tebow. Skip Bayless will not STFU about him. ESPN did an entire Sports Center on him. NFL Network did an entire episode of Playbook on him.
   82. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: December 17, 2011 at 12:42 AM (#4018190)
The media love talking about Tebow. Skip Bayless will not STFU about him. ESPN did an entire Sports Center on him. NFL Network did an entire episode of Playbook on him.


Everyone loves talking about Tebow. We've had more threads on Tebow than just about any baseball player this offseason.

He is both fellated and piled upon. Loved and hated in near equal measure. He truly offers something for everyone.
   83. Lassus Posted: December 17, 2011 at 12:42 AM (#4018191)
I find it bewildering that you think the press *isn't* fellating him.

Every single day I hear just as much "He can't throw, his defense is winning, the schedule is weak, the opponents' coach falls apart" as how awesome he is. As I said - and you left out - I find it to be 50/50 fellate/indict.

So if it wasn't clear clear, they are fellating him, but no more than they are saying he's not that good.
   84. PreservedFish Posted: December 17, 2011 at 12:51 AM (#4018193)
Just because they are all TALKING about him is not the same as them all saying he's Dan freaking Marino.


This is what I was going to say.
   85. Lars6788 Posted: December 17, 2011 at 01:27 AM (#4018204)
What I find funny is the media jumping on the Tebow bandwagon - some who act like they are the only ones who could have predicted Tebow's success and now have been vindicated because against all conventional wisdom, they said Tebow was going to be something other than a glorified running back.
   86. Greg K Posted: December 17, 2011 at 01:13 PM (#4018348)
I haven't actually seen him play. Is he at all similar to Doug Flutie? I'm guessing Tebow is a bit more of a conventionally built football player. But the disparity between his success (or maybe to be more accurate his team's success) and the opinion of those "in the know" sounds familiar.

I actually can't even be sure about Flutie. His status as CFL hero pretty much made it impossible for me to be in any way objective about his talents. Was Flutie a Tebow with talent? Or just a Tebow.
   87. villageidiom Posted: December 17, 2011 at 02:18 PM (#4018357)
I don't see it as irrational love of Tebow. He was a great college player, his NFL team is winning, he is seemingly well liked by his teammates and coaches. Oh, and he happens to be devout in his religion, a trait that a lot of people actually admire. It's not irrational at all.
In the case of Tebow and/or the Patriots, there is rational love, too, and it is as simple as you describe. I don't think anyone objects to that. But that doesn't negate nor excuse the irrational love. In the case of Tebow, the irrational part is the "they're winning because God wants him to win" thing. At least, it's irrational (a) among the devout who believe their rewards are not in this life, and (b) as long as one ignores the impact of the Broncos' defense in the latter half of the year.

I haven't actually seen him play. Is he at all similar to Doug Flutie?
Doug Flutie had a cannon for an arm, and accurate, too. Tebow is similar in that he's a threat to run, and in that conventional wisdom suggests he'd fail in the NFL.
   88. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: December 17, 2011 at 02:44 PM (#4018361)
Doug Flutie had a cannon for an arm, and accurate, too. Tebow is similar in that he's a threat to run, and in that conventional wisdom suggests he'd fail in the NFL.

Watching Tebow throw though, looks exactly like me trying to throw though... but at least I have the excuse that I'm right-handed.
   89. Ron J Posted: December 17, 2011 at 02:50 PM (#4018366)
#86 Flutie and Tebow are utterly different players. Flutie ran some, but mostly it was a scramble, trying to keep the play alive long enough to complete a pass.

Flutie made a lot of weird looking throws but that's mostly because the throwing lane was relatively easy to block. He often had to throw around a lineman, so he'd throw almost sidearm a fair amount. You'd hurt the team trying to use Flutie as a straight drop back QB and I haven't seen many good throws from Tebow from the pocket. That's about the only area of similarity. Thing is that Flutie was at minimum technically sound in the pocket. It's just that his size worked against him with alarming frequency in a straight drop back. Tebow isn't fundamentally sound in the pocket but seems to do OK on the move.
   90. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: December 17, 2011 at 03:22 PM (#4018382)
Flutie was a MUCH better passer.

I've watched Tebow 3 times now all wins for Denver and despite the fact that he's been involved in the winning drives he really has not looked impressive except in brief flashes

It looks like Denver is really on a roll and he's along for the ride

This may sound funny but he really looks like a football player out there but he does not look like a QB
   91. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: December 17, 2011 at 03:52 PM (#4018403)
The problem with Tebow is that he has to chop a small child's penis off before every game, or he turns to dust. It's very sad.
   92. DA Baracus Posted: December 17, 2011 at 03:59 PM (#4018410)
This may sound funny but he really looks like a football player out there but he does not look like a QB


Not at all. I said in the football thread a while back that he's not a QB, he's a football player that the Broncos happen to put under center.

If they meet in the playoffs, does Tebowing and Troy Polamalu saying a prayer before every play cancel each other out?
   93. billyjack Posted: December 17, 2011 at 04:05 PM (#4018414)
#86 thru 90...
I'm on a droid and can't easily look up how they compare, but Flutie in 1988 with
New England ran off a string of unexpected wins, doing it with
poor stats. The Pats' defense was still great back then, and much
of their offense was just handing it to John Stephens... but Flutie didn't
make many mistakes and ran a ball control offense... might be
an interesting comparison... one of Flutie's only losses during the streak
was on a missed chip shot field goal at Indy after Flutie ran a flawless
two-minute drill...
   94. Drew (Primakov, Gungho Iguanas) Posted: December 17, 2011 at 04:38 PM (#4018422)
I find it bewildering and almost hallucinatory that you can say he's been getting fellated by the press. NFL people all over everywhere have been saying he's terrible up until today. Just because they are all TALKING about him is not the same as them all saying he's Dan freaking Marino. It maybe has reached 50/50 now, after all these games, between "good" and "terrible".


There's two different arguments in here. 1) He *is* getting fellated by the press, that is not disputable. 2) He's is *not* getting fellated by all of the press. That is true, too. And nowhere did I write that ALL or even *most* of the press is genuflecting on him--you made that up yourself, and it is not what I intended to say.

If you're going to make strong statements about something someone writes, at least identify what the person is saying before you go off.
   95. bobm Posted: December 17, 2011 at 05:05 PM (#4018441)
Still, Gonzalez still feels a kinship to his football-playing counterpart. Both are living what can be a challenging existence—Christians in the middle of a professional sports environment.

Is this a reference to the temptations of Popeye's fried chicken and beer during games?
   96. Lassus Posted: December 17, 2011 at 05:16 PM (#4018454)
Drew - my intent to poke football people in the eye over Tebow got the best of me, and what I wrote was rather nonsensical, agreed.
   97. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 17, 2011 at 05:19 PM (#4018456)
Not at all. I said in the football thread a while back that he's not a QB, he's a football player that the Broncos happen to put under center.

It's interesting in that the NFL has a very narrow definition of what a QB must be.

Do we know it's impossible to run a modified option offense in the NFL? That change the definition of a QB.
   98. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: December 17, 2011 at 05:23 PM (#4018459)
Do we know it's impossible to run a modified option offense in the NFL?


Lots of people think we do know this, at least if you're talking about running it as your primary offensive scheme. Defensive players are just too damned fast. Running it on a part-time basis is a different matter of course.
   99. Dale Sams Posted: December 17, 2011 at 05:25 PM (#4018461)
   100. RobertMachemer Posted: December 18, 2011 at 02:31 AM (#4018739)
pause to allow the flip
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