Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tebow and Cam: A Matter of Perception

“Off the field, Tebow is as solid as they come; a team leader, humanitarian, and just about everything else.”

“Reminds me of: A beefed up, less polished version of Steve Young”

“He’s just a winner.”

The above are some of the things said about Heisman trophy winner Tim Tebow upon his entry in the NFL draft. Now turn your attention to some of the things said about a quarterback often compared to Tim Tebow, Cam Newton.
"You mad? HAHAHA"
“Does not spin a tight spiral. Very disingenuous — has a fake smile, comes off as very scripted and has a selfish, me-first makeup.”

“Lacks accountability, focus and trustworthiness — is not punctual, seeks shortcuts and sets a bad example.”

“Immature and has had issues with authority. Not dependable.”

Notice something strange there? When referring to Tebow nothing of his mechanical shortcomings were brought to the light, just how great a person he is, and I don’t doubt that he is a great person. But great people aren’t always the greatest quarterbacks. Hell going off personality traits Joey Harrington should be the greatest quarterback of all time. Now when Newton came out not only was his unorthodox style for a quarterback dissected, but also his personal life. Due to some shady characters, including his own father; Newton was painted as a guy who was going to fail at quarterback simply because he had “character risks.” Now what’s the reason for this? I don’t want to say it’s only race, but this does has a racial aspect.

For years black quarterbacks have been said to be “not smart enough” to be a quarterback, which was one of the knocks against Newton. Tebow played in a similar spread offense in Florida and while it was suggested he change positions it wasn’t due to his intelligence. Tebow has been lauded for his ability to just win, meanwhile glossing over the fact that Newton went undefeated in every game he started from his senior year in high school until a season opening loss to the Cardinals. Seems like a winner to me.

Tebow is often shown as being a hard worker, which is true; Tebow busts his ass every week as he should. But that implies every other player in the NFL doesn’t. To make it that far you have to be a hard worker. It takes blood, sweat, and tears and years of dedication and Tebow is not special in that regard as all players in the NFL have worked hard to get there.

Legendary?!?!?! It was against a winless team starting their backup!

I think though what angers me most about Tebow is not even anything he has done in particular. His supporters take any criticism toward the guy as an assault on Christianity. First of all Tebow is not the first openly religious football player, see Deion Sanders, Randall Cunningham, Kurt Warner, Emmitt Smith and Reggie White. So the idea that athletes have never before openly shared their faith is a complete and utter lie.

I have no problem with Tim Tebow, but the idea that I have to love him as a quarterback because he is a good person is ridiculous. There has been no evidence to suggest that his skill set will ever revolutionize the position and he can at best be a poor man’s (a very poor man’s) Kordell Stewart. As Tebow’s ascension to the Hall of Fame is being covered ad nauseam, we’re missing a real revolution in Carolina and that’s a damn shame.

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