Sunday, January 15, 2012

Tim Tebow's Train Crashes to a Final Wreck

Top: Patriots' defenders surround Tebow leaving him unable to break free to pick up a first down. Below: Tim walks away with head down after the 45-10 thrashing. This is it for the Tebow Train, at least for another year!

Last week, after the Denver Broncos' "miracle" worker QB Tim Tebow fired an overtime TD pass to Demaryus Thomas to beat a semi-crippled Pittsburgh Steelers team, all the Tebow groupies came out in force as predicted. The NFL Channel dominated with 88% of its special program time devoted to all things Tebow, including a "Tim Tebow special" on the quarterback's success this year. ESPN wasn't far behind and the newspapers must have racked up over 2 million inches in Tebow column space.

At The Washington Post, none other than former senior editor Sally Quinn actually wrote a fairly serious exploration of the possibility that Tebow might be "the Second Coming of Christ". After all, if he could engineer such marvelous game endings, plus do all his charitable work, perhaps he was Jesus Christ but now reincarnated in the form of an NFL football quarterback.

Not far behind, Michael Medved penned in a Wall Street Journal op-ed yesterday: 'The Secrets of Tebow Hatred', castigating all those churlish imps who would dare rain on the Great One's parade while a league "stocked with millionaire wife beaters and dog killers" received little or no opprobrium. Medved ultimately asks: "So why should Tim Tebow draw more resentment than other religious athletes?" and concludes "he's too apparently flawless to draw much sympathy from the uninitiated."

Meanwhile, a small stable of truly elite NFL quarterbacks (e.g. Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Eli Manning) waiting in the wings to play in this weekend's playoff games - had to listen and watch as endless hour after hour of prime broadcast time was devoted to Tim Tebow. Ultimately, one surmises that before the New England Patriots game with the Broncos last night, several thousand emails or tweets landed in NE QB Tom Brady's devices imploring him: "Please, Tom! Put an end to the hype behind this m***f*cker!" And so he did!

Tossing 6 - count them SIX - touchdown passes before the game was four minutes into the second half, tying an NFL playoff record, Brady and his Patriots routed the forlorn Broncos 45-10.The major ass-whipping, accompanied by hoots from the New England crowd and mocking chants of "Tebow! Te-BOE!" put a gnarly finish on the game's ending while dashing the hopes of the Tebow faithful that another miracle was yet in the works and he'd somehow pull one out with his "Lord and Savior" on his side. And no, to a Jesuit opinionator (Fr. J. Martin) in yesterday's WSJ, even if the Tebow led Broncs had somehow won, it wouldn't have "decimated atheism in the Rocky Mountain region". It merely would have meant the Broncos and Tebow had more luck or Zebra's calls on their side than anyone might have imagined!

In other words, the end had an absolute finality to it that, mercifully, should finally quell the continual jabber about Tim Tebow and his ways while giving short shrift to so many superior QBs. But what did one behold when the Broncos were on offense? Only pathos and chaos! They began - even after winning the coin toss- by "deferring", which was equivalent to allowing NE to spot them 7 pts, which is what happend. Brady basically said: "Oh yeah? You're going to defer? Okay, we will just go and take a seven point lead!" Which they did.

Over most of the Broncos' possessions, meanwhile, they kept running a foolish option play which the Patriot defenders always sniffed out and halted - usually for negative yards. Meanwhile, by the middle of the third quarter, behind by 35-7, the Broncos had racked up 13 negative plays (that is, plays for negative yardage) with many made by Tebow himself. Unlike last week, when he played with his WRs like Eddie Royal and Demaryus Thomas against a feeble secondary - with outstanding Ryan Clark missing from action- NE was whole and they didn't miss a beat. None of the Broncos receivers were able to get open enough to make big plays. Tears meanwhile filled bars and sports pubs from Pueblo all the way to Denver on the I25.

Is the land now filled with inveterate, cynical "Tebow haters"? Not really. The fact is most of us don't "hate" Tim Tebow. Hell, we hardly know him personally. What we hate is the media hype and schmaltz surrounding him and the unthinking nature of his fans and groupies who appear to conflate occasional luck on the football field with some type of divine intervention or "miracle" - when a small dose of critical thought ought to lead them to ask 'Why this time and not next time?'

We also detest how the evangelical whackos in the country have exploited Tebow to their own ends to push their agendas. Such as Colorado Springs -based 'Focus on the Family' which featured a "John 3:16" ad in the midst of last night's game. Have they no shame? Has Tebow no shame for permitting himself to be used to further others' agendas? The point is what we detest is not Tebow personally but allowing himself to be used for such blatant hypocritical posturing and nonsense, even as his many fans dote on him but do so while lacking any balance or proportion or judgment. This is what has driven many of us literally nuts, and why we hoped someone would finally put a lid on it.

Fortunately, Tom Brady did last night, and in stunning fashion. Yes, mayhap Tim will be resurrected next year. But at least for about eight months we shall hear no more about his "magical plays", his special whatever it is, or "miracles" that "bind the faithful".

All genuine miracle workers, alas, need them to keep occurring in order to be marked real...and they can't fail when the biggest obstacles emerge (such as 45-10 leads). Unfortunately for Tim, his miracle train crashed last night -- running into a determined New England team itself committed to ending the vacuous nonsense and least for another year!

No comments: