A Case For Tight End Tim Tebow
Photo by the Mississippi Baptist Medical Center
Tim Tebow is reportedly signing with the Jacksonville Jaguars as a tight end, getting a chance to play for his old coach Urban Meyer. This news has sent the sports world into a legit frenzy. Now, granted, it is a great time for this type of news to break. The timing is nearly perfect; the NFL draft is over, besides rookie mini-camps and OTAs, there is not a lot to talk about in the NFL world. So Tim Tebow getting a chance to play with his old coach is going to make the news. Of course, everybody loves and follows him Tim Tebow and with our platform being a Christian sports podcast, we are going to, at the very least, want to know about what is going on with Tim Tebow. He is a champion of the gospel. His story serves as a reminder that with God on your side, nothing is impossible. However, to be honest, not everybody here is FOR this Tim Tebow signing with the Jacksonville Jaguars, right, because there are so many other issues at stake. People are not upset because Tim Tebow is getting a chance to play; they are more so upset about a guy who is not getting a chance to play. That's one Colin Kaepernick.
Colin Kaepernick has been away from the game for a significant amount of time. As we all know, he has not been willingly away from football. The NFL has not SERIOUSLY given this man a chance to play for an NFL team. A significant percentage of NFL fans and NFL players are saying, "Why in the world would Tebow get a chance to play before Colin Kaepernick?" Some people point to stats, some point to age, but we know the real reason, there is a situation with Colin Kaepernick. Colin Kaepernick kneeled during the national anthem to bring attention to police brutality and the way that African American men are being treated by police officers in the United States of America. Due to this action, he was blackballed by the NFL. However, zero consideration or true justice has been shown to the man who put his career on the line to bring light to this situation. So now, Colin Kaepernick can not come back to the NFL. Colin made his stance, the NFL and Kaepernick agreed on a settlement. Therefore, It does not look like he will ever get a chance to play in the NFL again. So that is what it is at this point. He has been black-balled. He is not coming back to the NFL, according to a lot of people that I've talked to about this issue. I talked to, Fox Sports Analyst, Chris Broussard about this issue. I asked Mr. Broussard about Colin Kaepernick getting a chance to get into the NFL, and he said outright, he does not believe it is going to happen. (MTMV SPORTS PODCAST NETWORK (mtmvpn.com) ) And okay, cool. That is what it is. Okay, let's talk about Tebow.
Tim Tebow is about to be a Jacksonville Jaguars. Tim Tebow playing at the tight end position, do you like it? Do I like it? I am not going to lie to you. I kind of like it. I kind of like Tim Tebow coming back. Let me tell you a few reasons why I like it. I am going to attempt to lay out a case for Tim Tebow coming back and playing tight end. I am not saying that he is going to be great. I am not saying that he is going to be good. I am not even saying he is going to make the team. I am also not saying that he will ever play a snap at tight end for the Jacksonville Jaguars. I am only saying that the position shift makes sense, and there is a possibility that this experiment can work.
When Tim Tebow was drafted out of the University of Florida, he was a phenomenal athlete. Everyone knew he was a great athlete, but actually how great? Well, Tim Tebow had a RAS score of 9.92 out of 10. What is a RAS score? RAS stands for the relative athletic score, and a score of 9.92 out of 10 translates to THIS DUDE is A RIDICULOUS ATHLETE. A RAS score of 9.92 out of 10 coming out of college is a crazy high score. Let's talk about his size coming out of college, Tim Tebow measured in at nearly 6'3, 236 pounds. In 2007, he won the Heisman trophy, as the best football player in college football. In 2006 and 2008, he wins the SEC Championship and the BCS National Championship. There was a lot to love about Tim Tebow as an NFL prospect.
Photo posted by Richard Pérez-Feria
Let's talk about speed, in terms of the speed at the position of tight end. Well, going into his 2010 draft, he ran a 4.71 in the 40. Let me put that in perspective. Some people believe Tim Tebow was blazing fast. He was not blazing fast, and we saw that on the field. He was not always able to outrun linebackers, burn cornerbacks, or outrun angles, like say a Lamar Jackson or a young Michael Vick. To put it in perspective, Michael Vick just ran a 4.72 in the 40. He's 40 years old. So he is not blazing fast, but he is, or at least was, "tight end fast". The average NFL tight end runs a 4.75 in the 40-yard dash. To give you an example, TJ Hockenson, a tight end for the Detroit Lions, ran a 4.7 coming into his draft. Now let us talk about his size. A lot of people say Tebow at 6'3, 255 pounds is too short for the position. These fans are most likely comparing Tebow's height to some of the current greats at the tight end position who tout imposing height. The average height for a tight end in the NFL is 6'3, and the average weight is above 240 pounds. He matches that. So he is right there with the average tight end in terms of average height and average weight.
Now, you look at his age, Tim Tebow is 33 years old. Some fans believe this is somewhat old for an NFL player, who is attempting a comeback. In some positions in the NFL, like running back, wide receiver, or even cornerback, yes, it is kind of old by NFL standards, especially in positions where the demand for speed is high. However, that is not the case at Tight End. Tim Tebow at 33 is not Tight End old. What do I mean by that? Well, Tampa Bay Bucs tight end, Rob Gronkowski is 31. NFL Legend Tony Gonzales left the game at around 38. Jason Witten played last season at 38 years old, after a year in the broadcast booth. Former Saints and Patriots tight end Ben Watson played well into his late 30s as well. All of this tells me that Tebow is not too old to contribute to an NFL team. Some will say that those guys have been playing tight end their whole careers. They did not switch to tight end late in their careers. This is true, but keep in mind some position changes are natural fits. In those cases, especially with exceptional athletes, it can work. We generally see this as players move late in their careers from cornerback to safety, but if you remember QB Terrell Pryor moved from QB to WR and had a few productive years. Kordell "Slash" Stewart, in this day, frequently moved from QB to WR. While I will constantly say that Tim Tebow is not nearly "the unicorn" that is Saints QB Taysom Hill if there was ever a "you can do almost anything if you're a great athlete" example, he is the example. This man is a tight end, kick returner, punt returner, gunner, slot receiver, wide receiver, and quarterback. He is also 30 years old. If you do not believe me, I invite you to check the tape. So can Tim Tebow learn to play Tight End to a level that he can at least contribute to the Jaguars? I would say, yes. Tim Tebow keeps himself in excellent shape. I just heard an interview from Urban Meyer, and he said, Man, the coaches believe that Tim Tebow looks like he's 18 years old right now. The coaches were wowed by Tim Tebow after his first and second workout for the Jaguars. That is what led to Urban Meyer going public with the term "competitive maniac" when describing his former quarterback.
Listen, no one expects Tim Tebow to come in right now and be an NFL great at the tight end position. At 33 years old, when Tim Tebow comes back after an eight-year absence, we are not expecting him to come in and be Travis Kelce or even last year's Gronk. But Who could he be like? Are there any 6' 3 former NFL tight end contributors that could make a possible comp for Tebow? I'm going to throw out some names, some old names, that maybe you remember, but everybody that I'm going to mention was at max 6'3 and nearly 250 lbs, that's where Tim Tebow is right now. I will start with Tim Tebow's ceiling, Dallas Clark. Do you remember Dallas Clark? He played 11 seasons. He was a big-time player. He was 6'3. Can Tebow be prime Dallas Clark? I seriously doubt it. Could he be "final few seasons Dallas"? That is a strong maybe. Here is another name, Lance Kendricks. Kendricks is another example of a 6'3 tight end. He once played for the Rams. He flashed at times but was mainly a contributor. I can see a similar role for Tebow. If Tim Tebow can have the effectiveness of, last year's late-season fantasy football heartthrob, Jordan Reed that would be phenomenal, he is only 6'2. Delanie Walker, who was a staple of the Tennessee Titans for years, was only 6'0. If Tebow gets anywhere near Walker's production you will have to alert the medics at ESPN. They are going to lose their collective minds.
I am, once again, not saying that Tim Tebow is going to be amazing. I am not saying that at all. What I am saying is, if we look at the speed, height, weight, age, or lack of experience, none of these factors eliminates Tim Tebow from joining the Jacksonville Jaguars and being a contributing member of the tight end room. Urban Meyer, of course, believes the same thing. He won two national championships with the guy. He watched Tebow win a Heisman under his leadership. The guy came in and blew up the workout, and they think he looks nearly 18 years old. Which, I am sure is an exaggeration, but do you honestly believe Tebow came in running 2020 Gronk slow in a workout that left coaches raving about him? I simply don't believe that he cannot be a contributing member of the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Finally, I am not happy that Colin Kaepernick does not have an NFL job. I am not happy about that at all. I believe that Kaepernick deserves a job. He did exactly what he was supposed to do to turn America's attention to the outright and unjustified racism in this country. He risked it all to remind those "in power", of the plight of the African American male in this country. It is funny how, all of a sudden, it's a worldwide thing, and even the league that blackballed him, is "leading the charge" for equality. If the truth is told, we still have not received it, equality I mean, and the fight continues. I will scream forever to let this man back into the NFL. His being out of the NFL is an injustice and I am not cool with it.
With that being said, I am not going to sit here and hate on Tim Tebow, because I hate Kaepernick's situation. That has nothing to do with Tim Tebow's situation. Tim Tebow has a dream and wants to play in the NFL, and because he has a "friend at the front door", he's being afforded that opportunity. I'm not telling you that it is fair, but when you know somebody on the inside; it simply does not have to be fair.
I am going to give you a few different things that led to last year's Super Bowl victory. Let's look at what happened with Gronk, he was out of the league. He was retired; The Bucs would have never been able to randomly sign Gronk if Tom Brady was not there in Tampa. Gronk would have never unretired and signed with Tampa, but because Tom Brady was there, Gronk was there as well. Let's look at another example in Antonio Brown. Prior to signing with the Buccaneers, Antonio Brown was making rap videos, yelling at police officers, in legal trouble, and considered by most a complete nut case. Most NFL teams were not going to touch Antonio Brown, including the coach for the Bucs. I wrote about it in this blog, right after Bruce Arians said it. He was not going to go anywhere near him. He did not want to deal with Antonio Brown, but Tom Brady kept fighting for AB. Circumstances changed and bam, AB signs with the Bucs. That's the nature of relationships. Some stuff you wouldn't normally be able to get, you get. Urban Meyer and Tim Tebow have a very close relationship, and Tim Tebow stayed in shape. You didn't see this coming, but I'm sure they discussed this privately. I am simply not hatin' on it. Go do your thing, bro. If you can do it, do it. If you can't do it, we're going to know about it. In a matter of moments, we're all about to find out.