Blog Entry

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Posted on: October 31, 2011 2:32 pm
Edited on: November 1, 2011 2:37 pm

Posted by Ryan Wilson

When we started Tracking Tebow back in August, we'd figure it would be something to pass the time during the preseason, before Tim Tebow took his place on the bench next to BradyQuinn and behind Kyle Orton. We made this leap based on head coach John Fox saying that Orton was his starter and Tebow wasn't ready.

Five weeks later and everything changed. Actually, all that seemed to change is that Fox caved to public pressure to give Tebow a shot. Admittedly, Orton had been awful, and Denver had nothing to lose by throwing Tebow out there, but it still made Fox look indecisive and out of sorts, not exactly attributes you want in a coach, much less one in his first year in the job.


But there's also this: Fox inherited this roster from Josh McDaniels, who so mismanaged the Broncos' personnel situation that it could set them back for years. Of all McDaniels' decisions, the worst may have been shipping Jay Cutler to Chicago for Orton and picks, and then trading up in the 2010 draft to take Tebow (honorable mention: trading Peyton Hillis for Brady Quinn). Fox has three quarterbacks on the roster, none that he likes, and with the season already lost, he's going to see what he's got (though we suspect he already knows).

Clearly, Orton has shown that he can be a competent NFL quarterback, but his contract is up after season. After he stumbled through the first month of the season, Fox gave Tebow an opportunity on the off chance that Tebow might redefine what it means to win ugly. The finishes against the Chargers and the Dolphins only exacerbated Tebow Mania. But against the Lions Sunday, Tebow, as the Denver Post described him afterward, looked like "the worst quarterback" in the league. That may not be what you want to hear if you're the Broncos ... but it's not far from the truth, either.

Does Tebow deserve all the criticism coming his way? No, of course not. Just like he didn't deserve the over-the-top praise he got after the Dolphins' win. But here's the thing: like it or not, he's the face of the Broncos, at least for now. Part of the deal when you become an NFL starting quarterback is that the media scrutiny can be intense. The payoff: do well, lead your team to the playoffs, and everybody loves you. The downside: pretty much what Tebow is going through now.

We watched every snap Tebow took Sunday and while the opponents change, the results remain the same. Namely: Tebow continues to struggle with identifying coverages, going through his progressions, and getting the ball out of his hands on time. Couple that with average arm strength, poor mechanics and inaccuracy issues, and you get a lot of bad football. His line against Detroit: 18 of 39 for 172 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, and 10 rushes for 63 yards. Denver lost, 45-10, and it was somehow more of a blowout than the final indicates.

In a week, we've gone from "Tebow: the Winner!" to "Tebow: What the What?!" Who knows how this story ends, but there will be plenty of time for that. For now, here's a play-by-play look at Tebow's performance against the Lions.

                                                   Play by Play

(Note: You can view the play-by-play breakdown spreadsheet here)


“Can you believe No. 15 (Tebow)? Come on – that’s embarrassing. I mean, it’s a joke. We knew all week that if we brought any kind of defensive pressure, he couldn’t do anything. In the second half it got boring out there. We were like, ‘Come on – that’s your quarterback? Seriously?’” - Anonymous Lions defender to's Michael Silver

"It's too early to say. I haven't even had a shower yet, let alone looked at that tape. But we'll look at it and make changes where we see they are needed. We've definitely got to get better." - Coach John Fox when asked if Tebow would remain Denver's starting QB

"I think there are a few things (Tebow) can get better (at). The majority you can't correct. We've documented his accuracy, his elongated motion. … And watching last week's tape, the thing that was most disturbing was his ability to not understand where the ball has to go. His (lack of) awareness is mind-boggling to me. … The accuracy, that's not going to change. When you have the pocket, and you have the ability to get rid of the football, but you're unaware of where the ball's going to go, that disturbs me more (than the other issues)." - ESPN analyst and Tebow critic, Merril Hoge

"I like Tebow but that was pathetic. That wasn't a resemblance of an NFL quarterback. It's not all on him -- no running game, no blocking, no nothing (but) Detroit's defense isn't that darn good to put up numbers like that. That was crazy." - NFL Network analyst Deion Sanders.


Here's a sullen Tebow after the game:

The Detroit Lions (6-2) sacked Tim Tebow seven times and turned his two turnovers into touchdowns as they snapped a two-game skid with a 45-10 victory over the Denver Broncos.

A week ago Tebowing was cute (Tim was for it!). Now … not so much:

Tebow gets Tebow'ned by Lions LB Stephen Tulloch.

                                                   Action Shots

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're at it, add our 
RSS Feed.

Since: Feb 28, 2009
Posted on: November 18, 2011 3:19 am

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

What was Orton's record as a starter in Denver?

That's right. Don't even wanna say it do ya?

What is Tebow's record as a starter in Denver?

That's right. Don't even wanna say it do ya?

Orton SUCKS. Always has. Always will. He remains alone as the stain on the 2009-2011 Denver Broncos era. BTW, the fans are what's keeping the organization BREATHING. If you knew your bum from your elbow, you'd know that he DOES just sit on the sidelines in his heavy coat sipping Gatorade, wishing he was in the game losing on a consitant basis, making a case to go to the Pro Bowl with his precious stats, while TEBOW is out on the field WINNING. Enough said.

Send his sorry butt to Miami. They seem to have Orton's culture down-pat.    &n

Since: Aug 30, 2006
Posted on: November 2, 2011 11:08 am

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Of course Tebow is starting! Fox is going to stick with him. Granted he'll do nothing (or should I say is incapable of doing anything, his best QB offering is Jake Delhomme for an example) to get the kid, O-line, or defense ready. He doesn't have to. All the media is going to rain on Tebow if it goes bad. I'm not a Broncos or Tebow fan but live in Denver and there hasn't been a single article in this town condemning the lousy D, Knowshow Moreno, Demarrius Thomas (both drafted higher then Tebow), or that hideously archaic offense Fox and his crony McCoy run. You know why Fox isn't in Carolina anymore, aside from the dreadful 2-14 season he posted last year, becuase they KNEW they wanted Cam Newton and Fox would wreck him and hamstring his game. God knows no journalist in this town will criticize the deified John Elway for not going out and getting more free agent talent for this team or trading away the teams best reciever. How lucky can you be?! You get a pass for a lousy season! By the time this is over Fox will be like 5-27 for his last 2 seasons and nobody will notice under the torrent of Tebow bashing. What a gig! Fro Tebow to be successful at QB it would take the perfect storm, a team with some talent, a coach with some innovation to fit his skill set, a real QB coach (Adam Gase the current one obviously ain't doing his job, he was the WRs coach previously). I suspect that will never happen and he's going to knock around the league until he becomes an H-back somewhere. No need to be cruel to the kid though. He's working hard and trying his best which is more than you can say for half the players on this dog of a team. He won't be in Denver next year, Elway and Fox have made it clear he is not "their guy". Andrew Luck does NOT want to play for Fox, I guarentee that. The only QB under contract for next year is Tebow. So next year it'll be another rookie under center for the ready for another long season.

Since: Feb 25, 2009
Posted on: November 2, 2011 5:59 am

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Orton wasnt terrible he just like quite a few other QB started slow but was in the top ten in td passes with 8 when he was benched and 2 and half games later 11 td passes puts you in the top ten . So outside of the 4-5 hot qbs that started the year Orton wasnt as bad as has been claimed .
Amen, sho-nuff. "Wasn't as bad as has been claimed" is Kyle Orton's middle name. Kicking Orton around has been the #1 sport in Colorado for two years now, with throwing a hissy fit over Tim Tebow a close second. Broncos football is a distant third.

Whoever made the decision to yank Orton and put in Tebow should be banned from the NFL. That was purely a profit-driven decision. It made no other kind of sense to shoehorn in a project QB in his second year. As we have seen, it's only going to hurt Tebow's career. And it's not doing the rest of the Broncos any favors, either. So that leaves money. Somebody wanted butts in seats and an empty warehouse that was once stuffed with #15 jerseys, and they didn't care how much the team, the season, Tebow himself, and the fans suffered for it.

Since: Feb 25, 2009
Posted on: November 2, 2011 5:53 am

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Orton just sits on the sidelines in his heavy coat, sipping Gatorade the whole game. I also noticed his nonchalant laughing after calling "heads" and losing the overtime coin toss against the Dolphins.
When you've been the only bright spot on a horrible team for two years, lead the league in passing for most of the previous year, then get yanked for the only reason that makes sense: the coach caving in to the demands of the fans (since he bypassed the 2nd string and played the guy that the fans were shrieking hysterically about), all while being blamed for everything, 98% of which isn't your fault, then yeah, you might feel less than your teammiest.

Oh, and "nonchalant"? Leave the hyperbole to the color commentators. The idiots who claimed that Cutler sat down and pouted during the NFC Championship last year because he had no heart looked pretty stupid when the medical reports came out. No need to go down that path after them.
As for the rest of the comment, Denver is a terrible team, and it looks like they now have the terrible QB to go along with it. It's not Tebow's fault that his O-line couldn't block the sun with SPF185, but it's not anyone else's fault that Tebow's windup takes so long that a defender had time to get in and strip the ball. Neither is it anyone else's fault that he overthrew, underthrew, and completely missed receivers. He shouldn't be in there. He's not ready, if he'll ever be.

Since: Sep 23, 2008
Posted on: November 2, 2011 1:44 am

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Orton wasnt terrible he just like quite a few other QB started slow but was in the top ten in td passes with 8 when he was benched and 2 and half games later 11 td passes puts you in the top ten . So outside of the 4-5 hot qbs that started the year Orton wasnt as bad as has been claimed . He still has more td passes than Rivers and Freeman and is tied Flaaco and Kolb . Not OMG great but not horrible either considering he played the Raiders,Bengals,Titans,Packers,Chargers all pretty good defenses at the time . 


Since: Feb 28, 2009
Posted on: November 1, 2011 6:07 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Note: If you actually saw the whole game, you would know what's the problem, obviously. Some people just watch the bad high-lights.

If anybody loses their jobs here, it should be the Denver Offensive linemen, Defensive linemen, John Fox, and maybe even John Elway. This is the worst locker room in the NFL. Sabotage is happening on the field, meanwhile, Fox and Elway assume no responsibility for any losses whatsoever. After the game's over, all they do is assess what's happening at quarterback. Last I checked, the quarterback can't do it all by himself.

And the locker room shows no respect or support for ANYbody. Orton just sits on the sidelines in his heavy coat, sipping Gatorade the whole game. I also noticed his nonchalant laughing after calling "heads" and losing the overtime coin toss against the Dolphins.

It's not even a team, really, the Broncos are Champ Bailey, Von Miller (where's Dumervil?), Ryan Clady, and Eric Decker, with Tebow, who only has seven career starts (and only two INT's throughout) and expectations to lead this team to the playoffs after a 2-5 start.
You know it's management's fault when you blame the wrong guy for the team's failures (Orton, Tebow). Meanwhile, remaining ignorant to the real problems, and keeping them active in games. In fact, the Broncos will not have a QB who WILL be successful with THIS team. They can try anybody. Tom Brady couldn't lead this team to a win. Don't believe me, WATCH THE GAMES!

And the fans, all they want to see is wins, whether it be with Brady Quinn, Tebow. Don't blame the fans, either. It's Fox's fault, and it's Elway's fault.

Because it would be SOMETHING, if these guys had a track-record for winning, and were actively doing the right things to turn around a lousy franchise, but they AREN'T. I've heard the self-proclaimed words from John Fox that this was a "new and imroved defense". REALLY? You lost to the Lions, Packers, and Chargers by 29 points or more, without allowing less than 15 against the Dolphins. It's not new or improved at all!

I only know one guy that takes responsibility for his actions on the field: TIM TEBOW. This team SUCKS, and I feel very bad for him.     &

Since: Jun 11, 2008
Posted on: October 31, 2011 10:47 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

I don't know if you heard of this Rockety, but the first amendment gives the person the RIGHT, not just a privilage, but the right to speak their mind. And no. that person does not have to give any detail about themselves to anyone if that is their desire. but since you're all for anonymity, how about you start first. tell us every detail about yourself so that we may decide if you should have the privilage to speak your mind. What you don't want to? why that is very brave of you. you demand so much from everyone else while not living up to your own standards. How about this, because you clearly want to live in a police state where others must first live up to your own standards and moral code how about you move to N. Korea or Iran or some place like that. it seems that your ideals concerning liberty lines up perfectly with theirs. what a tool.

Since: Dec 1, 2006
Posted on: October 31, 2011 6:44 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Wow, just listen to the guy speak to the media. Mechanics aside, he's too dumb to be a successful NFL QB.

Since: Jan 8, 2007
Posted on: October 31, 2011 6:27 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 8: The train has derailed

Let's be fair;

From this point forward, list the name, profession, and failures/successes of EVERY SINGLE TEBOW hater.
Every single one.  Every 2nd string G.  Every punter.  Every waterboy.  Every waitress.  Every car salesman or business executive.  Every one...

If you have something negative to say about a college champion with a Heisman who is struggling as an NFL quarterback, then your anonymity is no longer protected.  It's only fair.  To all those with loud opinions hiding behind the protection of secrecy, I say, "What have you done?  What gives you the privelege?"

Show me how great you are and what gives you the right.

-Tony Scheffler?!  Seriously?  Oooohhhh, you're an average TE surrounded by MUCH BETTER team mates.  You should definitely get the microphone first.  Next.
-"In the second half it got boring out there," one Detroit Lions defender.  Have some guts.  Give us your name.  Did you even get on the field?  Nothing but a mouth.  Impressive.  Gutless.   Next.
-"Stephen Tulloch, after a first-quarter sack, literally knelt over the fallen Tebow while striking the pose. He later said he meant no disrespect..."  Really?  Imitating anything religious isn't disrespectful?!  Ha ha, Mr. Seven Sacks in six years.  Know what's disrespectful?  Your limited abilities and your obnoxious behavior.  Idiot.  Next. 

"...atrocious, terrible, completely exposed and not even close to ready?!"  C'mon, guys.  Grow a spine and identify yourselves so we can analyze the source and decide for ourselves.  It appeared on Sunday that the Denver Broncos are bad.  The Detroit Lions are on their way up.  Does that give THE ENTIRE Lions organization a right to step in front of the microphone?  Sure it does, but let us see who is spouting off and who is headed for the bus and game-planning for the next game.  THAT'S the guy I respect.  Where are the humble winners?  There are none in this story.

I'm not a Denver fan, nor am I rooting for Tim to fail.  I'm just a regular guy looking for the news.  I want names and sources.  I don't need someone else thinking for me, and especially if that someone is a scrub third-string safety or Joe Baloney the cabbie from NYC.  Print it all or don't print it at all.  Can you do that, CBS? 

Since: Mar 15, 2011
Posted on: October 31, 2011 5:18 pm

Tank it

Denver should try to lose as many games as needed to get Andrew Luck in the draft---he's their only hope.  they can trade tebow and orton for a couple of mid-round picks.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or