Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Stuff of (False) Legends

Now that the Tim Tebow saturation has, hopefully, ended, it's time to take a look back at how the "Tebow miracle" was pure public relations, selling a story, hero-making in the most nefariously deceptive form. The latest media blitz to sell advertising, tickets, jerseys, and magazines.

The Denver Broncos were 8 and 8 in the NFL 2011 regular season. A team that won the same amount of games that they lost. Hardly impressive.

The storyline goes - Tim Tebow was responsible for 7 of those victories, almost single-handedly as the legend would have it. But the effectiveness of the Broncos' offense, under the helm of Tebow, has some serious questions. Another example of correlation rather than causation masquerading as serious analysis and fact.

The Broncos had the 25th ranked offense (by points per game, out of 32 total teams) in the NFL, averaging 19 points per game. The Green Bay Packers were the highest scoring offense at 35 points per game. Tim Tebow was the 27th ranked quarterback based on passer rating at 73. Aaron Rodgers was the highest ranked quarterback with a 123 passer rating. Tim Tebow only completed 47 percent of his passes, ranking last in the league. Tom Brady, the leader in this category, completed 71 percent. Tebow also averaged the least amount of passing yards per game (124) in the league. Which also explains Tebow's low average of  6 yards per completion, ranking 26th in the NFL.

This is not to say Tebow has no future as a quarterback, that he can't improve, or that, someday, he might be one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. But, based on the numbers, Tebow has neither deserved the accolades being poured upon him nor would it be logical to claim he is among the league's elite quarterbacks.

Let's hope Tebow was taking notes on the quarterback clinic Tom Brady put on in the New England Patriots 45-10 route of Tebow's Denver Broncos on Saturday. That was the type of performance expected of NFL elite quarterbacks, and deserving of praise and envy.

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