Posts Tagged ‘Tim Tebow’

Interesting few days of sports…

  • So, Tim Tebow does it again. No need for me to recount what happened – turn on any Sports TV or radio show if you somehow missed it. AND, the Denver Broncos won becauseof his passing. Another chapter added to the great story that is the Broncos’ 2011-2012 season.I find it funny, though – Tebow haters still can’t give him any type of credit, regardless of what occurred in front of everyone’s eyes. I give props to ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith for humbly admitting he was wrong – something a lot of blowhards on the network simply can never bring themselves to ever say (I’m looking at you Tedy Bruschi, Merril Hoge and Skip Bayless). The popular excuse that people want to latch on to…”Pittsburgh had injuries.”

    Um…SO?!?

    Let’s be clear – EVERY TEAM has injuries. I’ll remind people – the Green Bay Packers won the Super Bowl last year with tons of injuries. The NY Giants and Houston Texans won their divisions and 1st round playoff games with numerous injuries all year. One of the typical people I deal with who doesn’t necessarily think about these things – they just regurgitate whatever becomes a popular, repeated point – said to me “Pittsburgh didn’t have their defensive leader or their top running back.” I replied “Neither did Denver”. Yeah – he had forgotten Brian Dawkins and Knowshon Moreno were Denver’s injured starters who were out. Oops.

    Plain and simple – the better teams step up and get through injuries. Sure, there are major injuries some teams can’t recover from – the Indianapolis Colts can attest to this – but most good teams can and do. And seeing as coach Mike Tomlin isn’t using that as an excuse, and Pittsburgh was favored to win – I don’t find it any sort of coincidence that every human being I’ve heard who is using the injury excuse is also anti-Tebow.

    Get over it. As I tell people all the time – you not liking someone or something doesn’t change reality. Hell, I don’t like LeBron James particularly – you’ll never hear me discredit him if he’s had a phenomenal game or literally caused his team to win. Then again, I don’t get upset and have to change reality if someone I don’t cheer for wins or proves me wrong. ***kanyeshrug***

  • Everyone is talking about the Lakers, Thunder, Bulls, Heat, Knicks, etc. for different reasons in the NBA this season…anyone notice that the Portland Trailblazers might quite possibly be the best complete team in the league right now? Because I definitely have.
  • Eli Manning said at the beginning of the season he was just as elite of a QB as Tom Brady. People laughed…looking at his season, I don’t think the kid was lying. Is he better? No. But he’s in the elite class, no doubt.
  • Anyone notice that ratings and attendance are up in the NBA after the lockout? I honestly didn’t see that coming. But apparently, the NBA had the same result after it’s lockout that the NFL did – people complained and b***hed so much, when it returned, they were all eyes. Conspiracy theorists might even say both leagues knew this would be the result. I for one am a bit shocked that both leagues saw no negative effects to revenue and ratings…
  • Very quietly, a storm is brewing in the NHL. No one is noticing, because – quite frankly – Americans could care less about hockey in general. But when the NHL announced conference realignment, the NHLPAtook that as an opportunity to assert their power as a union again. The issue is currently in flux, because the players haven’t agreed. This isn’t about them having a problem with it – it’s about them (the NHLPA) trying to re-establish themselves after getting massacred by the owners during their collective bargaining battle and subsequent lockout in 2004-2005.I’m not as deeply knowledgeable about hockey as I am other sports – but this doesn’t look like a good sign for the next labor negotiations. The union will be looking to wrest back some power and control after their massacre (which was decidedly worse than the loss the NBA players just took).
  • Quick – name a good, current heavyweight boxer not named Klitschko. Yeah – I can’t either.
  • You think money doesn’t talk? It was announced last week Floyd “Money” Mayweather will not start his jail term until AFTER he participates in his next fight, presumably on May 5th. Wow – that’s a hell of a bribe.
  • Someone complained on former player and fellow Syracuse alum Derrick Coleman’s Facebook page that they felt the Syracuse Orange are being “disrespected” because they’ve been #1 for 5 weeks and haven’t been on national TV a lot. Silly argument – SU hasn’t played any team outside of Marquette (this past Saturday) that was even projected to be a decent game. Most channels and networks decided on what games they’ll air well ahead of time, and the Orange have been playing a weak part of their schedule for the past few weeks. But it’s not a bias thing – the people making that complaint probably never notice how many times they find out that #1 (at the time they were ranked that high) Ohio State, Duke, Kentucky, etc. have lost in a game that wasn’t on national TV.Syracuse will be on national TV a lot more when they get into the real meat of the Big East schedule…
  • Ricky Rubio is the real deal.
  • I still don’t care about the BCS National Championship tonight. I’ll check it out…but if it ain’t good by halftime, I’ll watch the highlights on “Sportscenter”.
  • Jorge Posada is going to retire after 17 years with the NY Yankees. With 5 World Series titles under his belt, I’m thinking he can leave with his head high. Props, Mr. Posada.

 

That’s all for now. Interested as always in your feedback. Make sure you spread the word on the blog – sign up for email updates to new posts, and have your friends add the page on Facebook.

Until next time…Shoot, Pass, Quibble!

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Tim Tebow has been a divisive figure since he first rose to national prominence.

At this point in the course of the NFL season, I’m sure I don’t really have to rehash the tale of Tim Tebow. Hell – we’ve seen it all over ESPN, the internet, magazines – anything on the pulse of sports and pop culture has been on the Tebow hype train. And for as many people as there are who love him, there are just as many who can’t stand to hear his name, let alone see him. He has surpassed Mark Sanchez, Tony Romo and Michael Vick as the most divisive quarterback (and I’d argue overall player) in the NFL in terms of public opinion.

And when someone gets a lot of shine and hype, inevitably, there’s backlash. I get that – it’s the way Americans are. They love to build someone up, only to see them torn down. But truth is – in this case, when it comes to hating Tim Tebow, I’m going to flat-out say a lot of people are FULL of it. In fact, they’re being willingly mindless sheep and just jumping on the Tebow-hater bandwagon, because it’s the cool thing to do. And they’re making huge arses of themselves by doing so, because they’re blatantly being overt hypocrites.

Now, before I explain this, let me be clear who I’m NOT talking about. I’m not talking about people who have honest critiques of his passing abilities and skills. I’m not even talking about people sick of seeing him dominate headlines and large portions of ESPN and NFL Network shows. So then who am I referring to?

Those hypocrites who find it funny to mock and make fun of his faith and religion.

Because really – it makes no sense. Turn on almost any sporting event – you’ll see athletes expressing their faith. Praying. Pointing towards the sky, as if acknowledging a higher power. Giving thanks to God, Allah, Jehovah, etc. And you hear no one mocking Drew Brees, Derrick Rose, Phil Mickelson, or any number of sports stars. Yet it seems to be the “in” thing to do to clown Tebow, right? It’s funny, huh?

Reggie White was so entrenched in his faith, his nickname was "The Minister Of Defense".

Let’s be real here. I watch Tebow. Regularly. Have throughout his collegiate and pro careers. And he honestly doesn’t say or do anything more than I’ve seen done by others before. He acknowledges his creator. He owns that he’s very religious, and doesn’t downplay his faith. But really – it’s the media that harps on it more than he himself does. Kurt Warner, Muhammad Ali, Reggie White – all were actually more vocal and demonstrative regularly throughout their careers than Tebow has been. And none of them were mocked on their faith as much as I’ve seen Tebow (Ali was criticized and vilified for a lot, but he wasn’t getting national joking about him as the prophet Muhammad).

People make all types of jokes and criticism solely on his faith. “Jesus was too busy to help him this week”, some viewers, players and analysts have scoffed. “God hath forsaken The Chosen One.” “God isn’t a Broncos fan”. I mean…it’s been millions of variations, and it’s literally been going on since he was in college. But it’s gotten to the point of being extremely disrespectful and downright offensive – and more and more people are jumping on that bandwagon.

It even manifested itself on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live”:

The above skit was  water cooler talk the week after it aired, and many people thought it was great. I didn’t find it nearly as funny as many did. Why? Why do I not join in on the fun, and drop Jesus jokes and Tebow Our Savior lines??

Because there’s nothing wrong with Tebow being a devoted Christian.

Really – what’s wrong with it? What’s wrong with him acknowledging his faith, and giving praise to his creator in his personal life or after a game? The man doesn’t hold sermons, nor does he preach his faith every chance he gets in press conferences. It doesn’t dominate his interviews or post-game comments on his games and football-related questioning.  But the hypocrisy I’m referring to, is quite simply this – most of the people who want to clown Tebow in this fashion identify themselves as Christians.

Umm – excuse me??

Am I missing something? Wait – so you yourself are a Christian, and it’s funny to clown a man who proudly wears his Christian faith on his arm? Realistically, Tim Tebow should be the man every Christian sports fan in America should be telling their kids to be like. He’s achieved great things, doesn’t smoke, doesn’t drink, does charity and volunteer work to help people all the time without calling the media to document it, doesn’t have a single controversy attached to his name…but he’s reviled and made fun of by other Christians? Huh??

I’m a Kobe Bryant fan. Yet I would never tell a kid to be “just like Kobe”. I’d be very specific and tell someone to emulate his approach to being the best at his profession, and tell them to incorporate his drive, his will, his passion and his actions in terms of what he’s done to become one of the best in his sport. But I wouldn’t tell them to be just like him – because he’s been a womanizer, he’s put himself and his family in terrible, awkward public situations, he’s been called out as being sometimes too focused on basketball than family, etc. And don’t even get me to naming his basketball peers – Kobe’s actually one of the tamer ones. That goes for all sports – should kids be just like Brett Favre? Alex Rodriguez? Patrick Kane? Roger Federer? Phil Mickelson? Floyd Mayweather?

I’m sorry – Tebow may be the most shining example of an athletic role model we’ve had in a long time – regardless of your faith or religious beliefs. But too many people have it all twisted – let’s mock his beliefs and faith. How dare he vocally give praise to God before he starts a press conference! How dare he not shy away from it! How dare he be everything we say we want kids to be, but then we turn around and go buy them a T.O. jersey or LeBron James shirt!

If you’re Christian, I’m assuming you’ve been to church. You’ve prayed. You’ve done many of the things Tebow does and doesn’t hide or shy away from. True, many athletes pray after games – but Tebow takes it a step further by deciding to be an unashamed Christian at all instances. Again – he’s hardly the first athlete to wear his faith on his arm for everyone to see. But he’s never said or done anything more than I’ve seen others do to warrant the religious attacks and mockery he suffers. And, to his credit – he never speaks out against it or seemingly gets mad. He literally turns the other cheek – a Christian principle that’s often asked of people in this country.

If you want to criticize him for football reasons, I say have at it. Hell, if you want to clown him for those same reasons, go right ahead. But, if you identify yourself as a Christian, and you’ve joined in on the Tebow religious jokes at any point – you’re an overwhelming hypocrite. If you’ve ever complained about today’s athlete and how they act, but get on Tebow for being a “goody-goody” you are, again, a hypocrite. If you’ve complained about the type of role models some athletes are, but throw digs at Tebow, guess what you are?

See? I didn’t even have to spell that one out for you. You’re learning.

By now, everyone has seen the first week of NFL football, and had a chance to read all the headlines and see all the highlights. Most likely, if you’re a really big sports enthusiast like myself, you’ve seen the various shows that offer highlights, opinions and sports analysis. ESPN has a ton of them: “NFL Live”, “Mike & Mike In The Morning”, “Pardon The Interruption”, “ESPN’s First Take” – you name it, they’ve got it. The NFL Network only adds to the madness. And it makes for great entertainment week-to-week between game days.

But as entertaining as these shows and the people on them are, there’s actually a huge problem with this. See, the people on these shows are presented as “experts”, and often, the average fan will take what they say to be gospel – hook, line and sinker. Yes, that means most of you reading this. The absolute truth is – though most people like to think they’re independent thinkers, they really aren’t at all. Those who work in and/or around media know this – the public is easily swayed. A famous phrase in media circles for years: “The truth is what we tell them it is.”

Why does this matter? Because the people talking on these shows can create things that then somehow become reality just because they say it is. Case in point?

Cam Newton.

Ever since this kid came to national prominence, all I’ve heard from certain circles is what he couldn’t do, what he’s seemingly incapable of. Now, while I watch these shows and pick up insight on things at times, I am not like the average viewer. It’s a lot harder for these shows and the people on them to get me to take what they say as absolute truth if I don’t already see what they’re talking about. The most I’ll do is note what they said, and watch to see if their analysis holds merit. So hearing this garbage made little sense to me as I watched this kid stud it up all over the college football landscape last year. If he’s so bad, how come none of these top teams and coaches could stop him? How come he didn’t lose a game? What was up with that national championship, and all those awards – including the prestigious Heisman trophy??

In comparison, when Peyton Manning was in college tearing up the college landscape in similar fashion, he was universally loved and praised. Am I missing something here??

So yeah – I listened and read. All of it. And none of it made a lick of sense to me. All the questions on the best player in college, yet I listened to the same people praise such lesser guys as Jake Locker, Blaine Gabbert and Andy Dalton. I watch tons of games – so I saw all of these guys play extensively. And I came away impressed by Cam way more than the others.

As for Cam’s alleged “character issues”?? Ryan Mallett had much more serious issues, including rage issues and alleged drug usage. But he got less scrutiny and criticism that I saw in media. Why is that??

For all that the "experts" had to say - all Cam Newton did was go out and and make history in his first start as an NFL quarterback.

Let’s be honest here. And I know there are those who don’t want me to point at that elephant in the room, but it’s hard for me to not notice there’s an elephant in the room – Cam is a young, Black superstar QB. And, as far as we’ve come in terms of Blacks playing the position and being accepted doing so, there is still a stigma that most people of color notice easily. The other QBs I named – none of them had their intelligence questioned, their ability to lead questioned, their character questioned and their ability to “adjust to the pros”. What are you saying – he can handle the simpler level of college, but not the harder responsibilities and challenges of the pros??

Do your history. All those questions have been asked of Blacks any time they’ve been rising in a profession or position held in high esteem and occupied by whites. It’s insulting for me to even hear these questions yearly with whatever top Black QB rises in college football.

So – we hear all this crap about why Cam won’t do well, why he’ll have a terrible year and it’ll take him years to get it, etc. And truth be told, all rookie QBs struggle, so it’s not hard to buy into this hype. So what does Cam do in his first NFL game, against a good NFL defense??

He promptly ties the NFL record for yards thrown in a game by a rookie – set by the great Peyton Manning. Not only that, he threw for 2 TDs and rushed for another. It actually was the most in an opening game for a QB ever.

What happened to Cam not being able to grasp a NFL game? Read defenses? Lead a team? Sure seemed like he did all of that fine.

Oh, the spin doctors – and the sheep who buy their spin – are already quick to say “it’s only one game”. Now use common sense for a second. Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, Matt Ryan, Matthew Stafford, Mark Sanchez, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tony Romo and Tom Brady all had great statistical games this week that were praised by these same gurus. Only Brady had a bigger and better performance than Cam. And to get his stats and do it efficiently against a good NFL defense isn’t remotely easy – feel free to look up rookie stats of QBs for the past 20 years NOT named Peyton Manning.

And if you try the argument that he’s a rookie, so he’s not comparable to the list I typed – feel free to listen very carefully to how these same people spoke of Andy Dalton’s first game for the Cincinnati Bengals. Because I did. On multiple shows, radio programs, and I read it on multiple sports sites.

This is a case of a sport myth gaining steam and becoming a reality – and most of you sipping the kool-aid. Those who know me know I’ve been saying for a full year that I don’t buy the Cam bashing, and can’t wait to see him show out to shut the naysayers up. But lest you think this is all about race or my pride as a Black man in defending another Black man…

Let’s look at the curious case of Tim Tebow.

See, I’m also on Team Tebow as well. Tebow’s issue isn’t race; Tebow has been targeted from the jump for being a vocal Christian. Which is funny, because so many people identify themselves as such, but somehow it’s a problem that he’s proud and vocal about it. And a lot of people have commented he’s too good to be true; that there HAS to be something wrong with him. We have a word for those people where I come from – we call them CRABS

In any event, Tebow gets the smear treatment too. And when he was benched this preseason, I heard every moron without a mind of his/her own regurgitating everything you hear the Tebow-detractors spewing. But you see, the Tebow thing is actually more nonsensical than the Cam Newton spin. At least Cam is a rookie; you can expect him to struggle as such. Tebow isn’t, and has played in the league. Somehow, those  games last year where he led the Broncos – and did so WELL – are easily forgotten. Oh, I don’t expect the average fan to remember. Neither do the talking heads on TV – in fact, they count on you not remembering that Tebow has a career QB rating of 82.1. Or that he threw for 654 and ran for 227 last year. Or that he was in ESPN’s “Top Ten Plays” almost every time he played.

Interestingly enough, in last night’s “Monday Night Football” opener, the Denver Broncos’ #1 QB Kyle Orton went out and stunk it up. His stats aren’t too bad in the end, but if you watched the game – he was pretty pathetic. Most of his stats were padded by the final Broncos drive that ended in a score, where he finished 7/11 and threw for a TD. But he was a completely marginal QB; so much so that the fans were calling for Tim Tebow midway through the 3rd quarter. In fact – one could argue the Broncos lost in large part due to the ineffectiveness of Orton. I watched the game and thought one thing:

“Tim Tebow can’t possibly be worse than what I’m seeing.”

No, the Tebow narrative has played out and people (outside of Denver) totally buy into that crap. It doesn’t help that the new coach is inexplicably jerking him around…the players preferred a veteran, so I understand why Orton is starting (the same Kyle Orton who played so shaky last night the crowd was screaming for Tebow halfway through the 3rd quarter of last night’s Denver-Oakland game). But putting him 3rd on the depth chart behind Brady Quinn?? Please. I don’t know what’s up in Denver, but the rumor is Elway is behind these shenanigans. Which is silly and petty to me.

Tim Tebow watched from the sidelines while Kyle Orton stunk it up for the Broncos Monday Night.

I go by what I see. I’ve seen Tebow play, and when he played in the NFL, against NFL teams and defenses, he looked pretty damned good to me. When Cam got his chance to play, he broke records and played better than all-pros did in the same weekend. But I’m supposed to buy the narrative created for each player? Neither one can play, regardless of definitive evidence??

Rubbish. Understand – we live in a time where the sports “experts” are all trying to make their mark by trying to outdo each other with their strong opinions and personalities. Merril Hoge’s tirades against Tebow got him national press and drew people to ESPN to see what he’d say next. Skip Bayless has made a career out of bashing Lebron James, and now is a professional sports rabble-rouser. Jim Rome gained national fame for deliberately aggravating Jim Everett, and getting beat up by Everett as a result live on TV.

Learn to cut through the hype, lies and myths. Until they go out and prove themselves to be good, bad, or ugly (Cam Newton, Jake Delhomme or Jimmy Clausen), stop allowing yourselves to be sucked into buying the myths shoveled out to the public that quickly become unproven realities.