WWTT (Why Was Tebow Tebow?)
February 22, 2012 10 Comments
So Jeremy Lin is being spoken of in some circles as ‘the next Tebow’.
Can anyone explain why Tim Tebow was the previous Tebow?
From context what people appear to mean by calling Lin a ‘Tebow’ is, ‘another phenom who comes out of nowhere and makes a splash’. Now, I don’t follow either NFL or college football (let alone the NBA) that closely, but wiki tells me that Tim Tebow, quarterback, won the Heisman Trophy and won two college football championships, before coming to the NFL and becoming ‘Tebow’. Correct me if I’m wrong but I think the Heisman Trophy is supposed to be a big thing, and Florida is a big football powerhouse, and winning championships is pretty good too. All of this probably explains why the name ‘Tim Tebow’ wasn’t at all new to me – I had totally heard of him before he reached the Broncos. This should tell you something, because – for comparison – here is a full and complete list of college football players I can name from the most recent season:
1. Andrew Luck
(No, I can’t remember the name of the guy who beat out Luck for the Heisman.)
So, to summarize, in Tim Tebow we have a college football star who played for a big-time program, won some championships, won the Heisman, was drafted in (as far as I can tell) the first round, then became an NFL starter and won some games, getting his team into the playoffs.
How exactly is any of this like Jeremy Lin? An analogous basketball-version of a description of Jeremy Lin basically involves negating everything in the previous paragraph.
All we are ever told in articles about the ‘Tebow phenomenon’ is that Tebow, like, ‘wasn’t expected to do well in the NFL’, or somesuch. I don’t know who these non-expecters are supposed to be exactly, but it’s hard to see why I’m supposed to compare (a) a 1st-round Heisman winner’s NFL performance (=pretty good) to (b) the inexplicably-low ‘expectations’ of [some unnamed people], and conclude that Tim Tebow is some sort of Inexplicable Surprise Phenom, a football version of a Jeremy Lin.
People have told me that Tebow’s skills are subpar, unorthodox, don’t work for the NFL, etc., and so that’s why he’s such a Surprise Phenom. Well ok to all that, but if he sucks so much why did he win the Heisman and all that. I mean, at most what I can imagine that adding up to is that he’s one of those QBs whose skills worked in college (or perhaps, in his particular program/system) but not so much the NFL, like a Ty Detmer or a Vinny Testaverde or a Rodney Peete or someone. So, we’re seeing a storyline wherein a guy who was expected to be like a Rodney Peete at best seems to have turned out to be a little better than Rodney Peete, at least for one season? And that’s such a ‘huge surprise’ that we’re supposed to treat him as if he ‘came out of nowhere’? Would people have been reacting this way if Rodney Peete had had a pretty good season as a starter with some comeback wins and a playoff berth? I doubt it. So what is it?
Is it all just because Tebow does that, like, praying thing he does or whatever? (I don’t know how to describe it as I’ve never seen it. As I said, I don’t follow NFL that closely.) And that’s why he ‘wasn’t expected to do well’ to such a degree? Because of the praying? ‘Yeah, he won the Heisman, but he does this praying thing, you’ve gotta see it, I can’t imagine him going anywhere in the NFL’? Is there anything else, because if there is, I have never understood what (from reading articles about him).
Anyway, obviously since I never understood why Tebow was some kind of football pre-Lin, I now struggle to understand why Lin is the ‘next Tebow’. Or rather, Lin may be a Tebow, but objectively, it doesn’t seem to me that Tebow is a Tebow. Am I wrong?
Answer in comments.
P.S. I think I’m going to end all posts with ‘Answer in comments’ from now on…