Tebow’s feelings about homosexuality and gay marriage remain unclear. This summer, when asked about gay marriage by The Washington Post, his publicist jumped in and rejected the question. But, considering his ties to FOTF, he’s probably not about to announce he’s coming out of the closet (or would support those who have) — but who knows?
Still, if an NFL quarterback and card-carrying member of FOTF wants to go around very publicly kissing other men on the mouth, we’re OK with that.
[I don’t think that even counts as a kiss. I’m pretty sure I’ve accidentally brushed lips against a few people in my life without meaning to. It was basically a millisecond of brush – as though they were both going in for the same side of the hug. There’s no reason it should be news.]
Debunking the Tim Tebow Myth
If you think the Broncos’ new starting quarterback has finally earned the right to be treated like NFL royalty, you probably don’t want to read this breakdown
“Congrats to @TimTebow for that comeback win today. Impressive! He’s just a winner.” — @KingJames, who knows about guys who just win when he sees them.
Far be it from us to ruin an admittedly great story, but let’s be real about the Tim Tebow plaudits being thrown around after the Broncos’ 18-15 comeback over the Dolphins on Sunday. Tebow certainly deserves some of the credit, but not the massive outpouring of praise that is being thrown his way.
The Win Probability chart at advancednflstats.com for this game tells the true story of what happened. When Tebow took over on his own 20-yard line down 15 points with 5:23 left, both Broncos and Dolphins fans were leaving the stadium in Miami, and they weren’t wrong to do so. The Broncos’ chances of winning were estimated to be around 1 percent. Tebow proceeded to lead his most impressive drive of the day, going 80 yards in eight plays, throwing a five-yard touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas.
For all that work, the Broncos’ chances of winning had improved all the way to … 2 percent. Teams with an eight-point lead that are about to receive the kickoff simply don’t lose very frequently; it takes an expected onside kick to pick it up, and teams recover expected onside kicks only about 20 percent of the time. When the Broncos were able to recover the kick, their win expectancy improved to 12 percent; the onside kick was six times more valuable than Tebow’s drive. If that figure seems low, consider that the Broncos still needed to drive 50 yards, score, pick up a two-point conversion, and then win in overtime. They had momentum in their favor, but so have plenty of other teams in this scenario who haven’t been able to pick up the W.
Tebow then proceeded to take advantage of a short field. Starting on his own 44-yard line, Tebow drove the team 56 yards in 10 plays, highlighted by a gorgeous 28-yard throw to (and equally impressive catch from) Daniel Fells. After that, Denver converted the two-pointer on a Tebow run1 and the Broncos’ win expectancy was pushed all the way up to 46 percent. They’d made an incredible comeback, but they were still underdogs heading into overtime.
After they won the overtime coin toss and traded possessions with the Broncos, the Dolphins remained favorites. When Daniel Thomas converted a second-and-2 to give the Dolphins a new set of downs on their own 43-yard line, the Dolphins only needed to travel about 25 more yards to pick up a game-winning field goal. They win an estimated 67 percent of the time in that situation.
That, of course, led to the final dramatic swing. Broncos linebacker D.J. Williams sacked Matt Moore on the ensuing play, producing a single-play swing that was bigger than any of Tebow’s drives. The Broncos went from a win expectancy of 33 percent to 78 percent by recovering the fumble, and while they proceeded to gain only two yards on the subsequent drive, they converted another short field into points to win the game.
On Sunday, Tim Tebow was given a total of 15 possessions. Four of them started with 56 yards or less to go for an offensive touchdown. Not coincidentally, of the four, three were his final three drives, and he produced a total of 11 points on those drives. His other 11 drives all started deep in his own territory, with six of them beginning on the 20-yard line and only one beyond the 25 (a drive that started on the Miami 41 that resulted in a missed field goal). Ten of those drives resulted in eight punts, a missed field goal, and a fumble. They gained, on average, less than 12 yards.
This isn’t a one-week trend, either. When he came in against the Chargers last Sunday, Tebow started with three consecutive drives inside his own 31-yard line. The Broncos punted on all three drives. On the ensuing two possessions, though, Tebow started from his own 49-yard line and the San Diego 41-yard line. With the short fields, he proceeded to score two touchdowns. It can’t be much simpler.
A lot of what we’re crediting to Tim Tebow is actually the impact of things that are totally out of his control, a combination of field position, defensive turnovers, and a miracle on special teams. He deserves some of the plaudits that have come his way over the past two Sundays. Just not all of them.