Denver Bronco linebacker Wesley Woodyard said it best: “For all you Tim Tebow haters: you’d better start believing.”
You can’t argue with the 24-year-old Tebow’s success – a factor which could take the devout quarterback and the Broncos all the way to the Super Bowl. He seems too righteous for the tough-guy’s game of American football, with scriptural passages on his personal website, trips in high school to work at his father’s orphanage in the Philippines and professed pride in being a virgin until he marries. In 2009, Tebow appeared in an ad funded by the socially conservative organization Focus on the Family, putting him under fire from the pro-choice set.
He’s taken a lot of criticism for being outside the mould of quarterbacks. He’s no gallivanting Broadway Joe Namath.
But Tebow has been a winner and that trumps any feelings of conflict between his personal life and the reputation that usually goes with testosterone-laced big league sports. He’s creating believers. Even Bronco VP of operations and Denver football icon John Elway has reversed field since November when the Broncos had to find a quarterback. They’ve found one in Tebow, to the point where they aren’t pressured to draft and develop a new quarterback.
Tebow has a habit of snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. The team had only one win in five starts when he took over as starting quarterback this season. Since then, he’s turned the Broncos into a winner. The Broncos’ victory over the Bears was accomplished in the last two minutes of the game. Tebow’s passing was ordinary at 21 completions on 40 attempts. He didn’t complete a pass in the second or third quarters of the game and lots of balls were dropped by intended receivers. But he has a knack of pulling together late in the game.
He has taken the Broncos to first place in the NFL’s AFC West; he’s 7-1 as a starting quarterback, with six wins the result of second half-comebacks – sometimes winning the game in overtime.
Call it heart attack time. Call it miraculous. Denver coach John Fox calls it “competitive greatness.”
Whatever is firing up Tebow, it’s working – and his teammates are believing in him. You can’t count the Broncos out.