You’re sitting in the stands in a CFL stadium across Canada, whether it is BC Place, Ivor Wynne Stadium, McMahon Stadium, and you’re listening to the starting line ups blare across the PA system, and you hear “Tim Tebow”, would you believe it? No, probably not, but don’t worry, it might happen in the near future.
He was the No. 1 headline grabber in North America’s most popular league last season, and his trade to Broadway just packed a practice facility for this week’s introductory news conference with the Jets. He’s been a cover boy for Sports Illustrated, he made going to Church popular again (like it wasn’t before), his jersey flew off the stands quicker than Snooki could get a UTI on Jersey Shore. But don’t be surprised if it’s not too long before you will be hearing “AND THE STARTING QUARTERBACK FOR THE (INSERT CFL TEAM HERE), TIM TEEEEEEEEBOW.
Does it sound weird? Consider that right now, Tim Tebow does not hold a starting job in the NFL, despite a season in which his former team the Broncos went to the playoffs and beat former Super Bowl Champions, the Pittsburgh Steelers. Every NFL team has seen the TSN Turning points, and they’ve all studied him on film, and not a single one is willing to build their season around him. But the New York Jets believe in Tebow enough to make him their backup QB and design the wildcat offense around his skill set.
Is there any reason to believe the Jets- who took one year risks with the ageless Brett Favre and Santonio Holmes in recent seasons – are really committed to Tebow beyond this season? And if the Tebow “try-out” blows up in their faces this season, the back-up QB won’t be the only one not returning to Broadway for the following season And if the Jet’s gamble pays off, Maybe Tebow becomes the ultimate weapon off the bench or perhaps he steals the starting job from Mark Sanchez like he did in Denver. But if that doesn’t happen, and the “try-out” ends badly, where does Tebow go next?
How likely is it that another team would opt to make him a starter? Or depending how much drama unfolds in the Big Apple, How many NFL teams a year from now will want any part of the circus that comes with him. Unless you’re willing to make Tebow your starting as Denver did last season, or invest in him as a specialty package quarterback, as the Jets are now, having him on your team doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. In an ideal world, backup quarterbacks are kindly players who serve the sole purpose of being a safe option in the unfortunate situation that the starting QB goes down. You don’t want the fans screaming your backup’s name or huge media scrums around their lockers after games. You don’t want them to be magnets for attention.
Tim Tebow can’t help but attract attention. Like Doug Flutie, a generation before him. One of the reasons Flutie ran out of NFL opportunities early in his career is because teams simply didn’t want the distraction of him in the room as the back-up . Up until the very end of his career, Doug Flutie was incapable of being simply a backup quarterback. This is why teams had to either make him a starter or get him the hell out of town! It’s not hard to imagine Tebow coming to the same crossroad as Flutie, and every other former college star who finds NFL doors slammed in his face.
There is no doubt that some team in the CFL would welcome Tebow, question is, who wants him? The matter of whether he could succeed in Canada is an intriguing question. On the one hand, his ability to run and scramble suits the CFL game and, once he turns up-field, there’s no way someone will stop him. On a bigger field, where it’s easier for receivers to separate from their defenders, perhaps his lack of accuracy or arm strength would be less of an issue. And if Tebow’s arm strength is an issue on the smaller field, its going to be an issue on a larger one as well.
That’s all for now folks! Follow me on twitter @kevincawthra. Until next time,
YOU STAY CLASSY VANCOUVER