DENVER, CO - NOVEMBER 17: Tim Tebow #15 of the Denver Broncos prays prior to the game against the New York Jets at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on November 17, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Garrett W. Ellwood/Getty Images)
Tim Tebow is the most complicated man in sports. Off the field, he is a devout Christian. On the field, he is a mediocre quarterback for three quarters and a great one in the fourth. What should fans make of America's newest sports star?
Tim Tebow is complicated. Not so much in the way Facebook lets one list a relationship status, but more so in the way he is as a human being and a football player. Off the field, he's a devout Christian. On it, he's a mediocre quarterback for three quarters and a great one for the last.
In that way, Tebow may be the most complicated man in sports.
Before we move on, it's only fair to note the following - we don't really know the real Tebow. Sure, we see and hear so much about America's newest sports star in the media, but none of us know him well. I don't and you probably don't, so all we in the media have to go off is what we hear and are able to discern based off image and rumor. Remember, we all thought we knew Tiger Woods well, and that fell apart quickly (I'm not comparing Tiger to Tebow, for the record).
So what makes Tebow tick? First and foremost, it's his religion. Tebow is a strong Christian, and we've known that for a long, long time. At Florida, the same was true. We certainly heard about his faith in college, but it wasn't covered at the same level simply due to the large volume of storylines within college football. But he certainly was a believer then, too.
That fact alone makes him a lightning rod in sports. In general, people don't like it when others so publicly flaunt their religious beliefs. It creates a lot of resentment and can make others root for you to fail. Tebow is certainly facing that.
Yet it's not Tebow's faith alone that makes him a major topic of discussion. If that were true, we'd be talking about a lot more athletes in the same light, since there are plenty of other athletes that are religious and have made it public.
Some of the spotlight on Tebow - OK, most of it - is created by the media. When it boils down to it, the kid is a great story. We've all seen the commercials - he's been told since high school that he can't win, and all he's done is win.
But others have chimed in on to make Tebow an even bigger story. Take his pastor - you know, the one who isn't actually his pastor - who was quoted as saying that God is rewarding Tebow's strong faith on the field. Turns out he wasn't actually saying that, but it made enough of a stir in the news cycle to fuel the Tebow fire.
Still, all of that alone would make Tebow a second- or third-page story. It's what he's done on the field late in game's that has made him a front-page story week in and week out.
Tebow isn't famous because of his religion, he's famous because he is winning at the highest level in sports. Tebow sat on the sidelines for his rookie season and finally got his opportunity to shine early this season. He did not disappoint.
In eight games, Tebow has gone 7-1 as the Denver Broncos' starting quarterback. How he's doing it, nobody knows. Seriously, if you ask so called NFL "experts," they can't tell you either. Tebow is pretty bad through three quarters, but he can simply flip a switch in the fourth quarter and lead his team's comeback.
For example, as of November 29, Tebow's quarterback ranking (QBR) of 17.1 through the first three quarters was last among the 35 qualifying quarterbacks. In the fourth quarter, he had a QBR of 81.4 - fifth best in the NFL.
It doesn't make sense. It defies odds. But he wins. And that's what he is.
Tebow is a winner, that's what you should make of him. He's done nothing to prove otherwise. Go ahead, call him a lucky or blessed or whatever you want, but there's one thing you can't deny. He wins football games. Plain and simple.
Patriots fans have certainly had their fun this week as their team prepares to take on Tebow and the Broncos in Denver on Sunday afternoon. Most predict a Pats blowout win, and they still aren't giving Tebow his due. That in itself is idiotic.
OK, Tebow hasn't won a playoff game or a Super Bowl. That doesn't mean he isn't good (See: Marino, Dan). All we have to go off of is what we can see right now, and what we see is that he has defeated 87.5 percent of the teams he has faced in his young career. This is the NFL - not college, not high school. These are still tough opponents.
Like it or not, Tebow is winning. To discredit that fact is ignorant. Be warned, Pats fans, this guy can beat your team. He may not, but he's a winner in the NFL, so anything is possible.