Blog Entry

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

Posted on: November 8, 2011 9:30 am
Edited on: November 8, 2011 9:37 am
We're Tracking Tebow … because it's impossible not to watch. 

Posted by Ryan Wilson

Tim Tebow is 2-1 as a starter this season. After watching his performance against the Lions last week it's, well, a miracle. But faith is a big part of Tebow's life. So when absolutely no one -- including his coach -- believed he was anything more than a glorified fullback, Tebow came out against the Raiders … and looked a lot like a fullback.

The former Heisman winner rushed for 118 yards on 12 carries. He also had two legitimate "Hey, look at me I'm an NFL QB!" touchdown throws, but finished just 10 of 21 for 124 yards. It was more than enough against the Raiders, an outfit that committed a season's worth of stupid penalties in an afternoon, and seemed genuinely perplexed to learn that Tebow was a threat to run.

Tebow > Tebow meme

Whatever, it's a win, which have been hard to come by in Denver the last two seasons. Never mind that there are still serious questions about Tebow's long-term viability. On Sunday, he outplayed the Raiders' savior, Carson Palmer, who still looks like a guy fresh out off a nine-month break from football.

For all the criticism heaped on head coach John Fox in recent weeks, give the man credit for tailoring the Broncos' offense around Tebow's strengths. In watching every one of Tebow's snaps this season (preseason too!) a couple things quickly stand out: He struggles to throw accurately on the run (the irony isn't lost on us), and he's at his best on screen passes and short throws. (Yes, we realize this is a scouting report you might expect to read on a junior high school player.)

Against the Raiders the game plan was pretty simple: run Willis McGahee a lot, draw up some designed runs for Tebow (specifically: the Broncos' new-fangled, pro-style run-option scheme to go along with the old standards: Tebow draws and sneaks), give him some easy short throws, and take the occasional shot down the field. Denver didn't abandon the plan, even though they trailed by 10 points in the third quarter. Instead, they continued to lean on the running game and that, dumb Raiders' penalties, and a huge Eddie Royal touchdown return resulted in a blowout.

There's no question that Tebow played much better this week than last, and a lot of that had to do with what the coaches asked him to do (or more accurately: what they didn't ask him to do).

Can he keep it going?

Our eyes and brain tell us no … but this is the AFC West where mediocrity is rampant and every team is a playoff contender. The Broncos head to Kansas City next and the Chiefs are fresh off quite possibly the most embarrassing loss of the season, a 31-3 thumping at the hands of the previously 0-7 Dolphins.

So, yeah, anything can happen.

                                                   Play by Play

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


"It's a tribute to our coaches. We've definitely made adjustments. We've been in the process of adjusting for the last three weeks. It's a different style, but it can be effective." - Broncos head coach John Fox

"I think it was college." - Raiders quarterback Carson Palmer on the last time he saw a read-option running attack, referring to Tebow and the Broncos' rushing attack which racked up 281 yards on the ground.

"Honestly, I put that pressure on myself more than anybody else. To try to improve and ultimately get a victory no matter how it looks. That was a special one." - Tim Tebow

"I'm shocked. Ain't no way I thought that team could put 38 points on us with that quarterback. This hurt more than Buffalo." - Raiders defensive tackle Tommy Kelly


Here are the moving-pictures recap of the Broncos' comeback win:

Willis McGahee ran for 163 yards and Tim Tebow threw two touchdown passes to lead the Denver Broncos to a 38-24 victory over the Oakland Raiders on Sunday. CBS Sports' Greg Gumble and Dan Dierdorf have the recap.

Two week ago Tebowing was cute (Tim was for it!), then it was sad ... and now it's cute again:

We've fully prepared ourselves for the inevitable "How the Run-Option Saved My Career" Tebow autobiography.

                                                   Eye on Tebow

Tebow limbers up for some run-option magic (Getty Images)

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Since: Nov 9, 2011
Posted on: November 9, 2011 4:53 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

I have a comment about Tim Tebow.  Watch out, because he is a child of the most high God.  He will succeed because of proverbs 16.  He has committed his work to the Lord and it will succeed.  Tim knows how to handle the cirticisms about his faith and his christian walk.  You run your race, Tim will run his life race and leave the winning up to God!! Incidentally, Jesus Christ is the quarterback with all of the wins!!  Proverbs 31 wom

Since: Nov 8, 2011
Posted on: November 8, 2011 9:30 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

who ever wrote this artical is fffffffffffffffffffffff  azz  hole and tebow hater and most likly hates tebows faith, otherwise new better that tebow is just a rookie and with time will be better. So next time go and pick on some other religion, like the holywood.

Since: Oct 11, 2011
Posted on: November 8, 2011 7:49 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

All this love for a mediocre QB on a team that has nothing to play for. They are not a contender, and won't be for 3 years even if they start drafting better. Meanwhile, Joe Flacco drove 92 yards in the last 2 minutes to beat a top pass defense against a superbowl contender and nobody even mentions it. Tebow is Peyton Hillis, a runner that has initial success and then gets figured out and does nothing. When Tebow finally played a good defense in the Lions we all saw what happened there.

Since: Apr 9, 2010
Posted on: November 8, 2011 5:51 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

Just to further your point, P Manning set record for interceptions his first season, Elway won 4 games with almost double ints to tds, S Young was horrible on the Bucs, the great ESPN analyst Dilfer had 1td and 6 ints his rookie yr, and 4 td and 18 ints his second year. I mean come on the kid has started 6 games and is 3-3. Let him learn

Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: November 8, 2011 1:31 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

Have you seen Tebow run? It IS cute. There is no comparison between Tebow and Vick,

You're right.........kind of.  There is no comparision between Tebow and Vick as Vick was an overglorified RB playing QB and Tebow is an overglorified FB playing QB.

But, if you look at their stats, there is a good comparision there.  Tebow is completing just under half his passes while Vick hovered around 50% completion for his first few seasons as well. 

Since: Jun 29, 2011
Posted on: November 8, 2011 12:45 pm

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

It is amazing how many commentators talking about Tebow seek to put him down by stating how his skill set is like a junior high or high school quarterback.  Did they also use those words when describing John Elway's or Kyle Orton's horrific early play and even lower completion percentages?  I see other rookies like Gabbert play and people say stuff like, "That throw looked really bad, but Gabbert is young and this is his chance to learn and grow."  and then Tebow makes a terrible throw and people are like "throws like that make you wonder how he can be on the field."  I mean if the Broncos used a junior high quarterback to win, is that saying the Oakland defense is filled with elementary school level players?

Since: Oct 11, 2007
Posted on: November 8, 2011 11:59 am

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

Have you seen Tebow run? It IS cute. There is no comparison between Tebow and Vick, who was a super fast QB-HB hybrid (there is even less comparison to Cam who is near the top of the leader board in passing yards). Tebow is a not super fast FB-TE hybrid playing QB. He isn't going to outrun too many defenders and he's facing, mainly, 8 man fronts which means he has to try and truck people. It is fun to watch but just about the last thing anyone would want to see from their starting QB if, of course, they considered him a viable QB. To me, that is all you need to know about the Broncos' feelings about Tebow as a long term option as a starting QB.

Since: Nov 8, 2011
Posted on: November 8, 2011 11:40 am
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Jan 15, 2007
Posted on: November 8, 2011 11:22 am

Tracking Tebow, Week 9: the run-option lives!

Nobody seems to mind when Cam runs the option. Or countless teams trot out the "Wildcat". But when Tebow does it, it is "cute". Sure he is not playing awesome, hardly anybody does when they first arrive. The results seem to be coming though. Take a look at Vick's numbers in Atlanta, the majority of games he did not throw for many yards but ran for quite a bit. But when he did it, no one called him "cute". Odd.

Since: Nov 8, 2011
Posted on: November 8, 2011 10:53 am
This comment has been removed.

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