Tag:Urban Meyer
Posted on: October 24, 2011 10:03 am

Dolphins not looking to fire Sparano yet

SparanoPosted by Josh Katzowitz

At some point, you have to feel sorry for Dolphins coach Tony Sparano. His team is 0-6, and though some of that is his fault, Miami has lost in some mind-boggling ways.

Then, on Sunday, after Tim Tebow led the Broncos to 18 unanswered points in an overtime win -- even if it was a mirage -- owner Stephen Ross was spotted chatting up former University of Florida coach Urban Meyer (currently unemployed as a football coach) on the sideline. Considering Ross completely emasculated Sparano in the offseason by publicly going after Jim Harbaugh, I joked that obviously Ross was offering Sparano’s job to Meyer, effective immediately.

And really, it wouldn’t have been surprising if Ross had fired Sparano after Sunday’s effort. Alas, according to the Miami Herald, Sparano will continue coaching the Dolphins for now. Ross boarded a flight to Seattle, so the newspaper speculates he could change his mind after reflection, but that appears unlikely at this moment, especially since he probably wouldn’t fire anybody from thousands of miles away.

But going after Meyer? Was that really a joke, or could Ross actually be considering that?

From the Herald:
Never mind that the time Ross and Meyer spent on the sideline was completely coincidental. The owner intended to go into the Dolphins locker room to celebrate with his team when he left his suite. But by the time he got to the field level, the Broncos had made the score 15-7 and were lining up for an onside kick.

So the owner went to the sideline where Meyer “happened” to be standing. And the two got to talking. And Meyer, an impressive guy, seemingly impressed Ross.

That’s where it stops for the moment. It really can go no further. Meyer isn’t anyone’s midseason or interim hire. The Dolphins still believe if, and when, Meyer returns to coaching it will be on the college level.

None of that, though, should comfort Sparano. He is not long for this job, and it’s not all his fault. But that doesn’t change the near-certainty that a change is coming and Sparano will be the one left behind.

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Posted on: October 23, 2011 4:44 pm
Edited on: October 23, 2011 8:49 pm

Tebow's success a mirage

T. Tebow had a great final five minutes of the game Sunday (US Presswire).Posted by Josh Katzowitz

The Broncos made a ridiculous comeback on the Dolphins, and Tim Tebow was front and center, throwing touchdown passes and running in a two-point conversion. After the Broncos 18-15 overtime win against the Dolphins, he kneeled on the sideline. He could have been saying thanks for the final result. Or he could have been praying for the future.

Because while the first was impressive, the second is cloudy. 

For the first 55 minutes of this game, Tebow was terrible. Then, for five minutes at the end of regulation, he was the All-American from the University of Florida, leading his team to victory.

Tebow was terrible before he was awesome on Sunday. The Miami crowd went from jeering the Florida native to cheering him and chanting his name.

But don’t you believe the hype. Tebow was horrendous for much of the day, and Denver’s win had more to do with how bad the Dolphins are* than the future of Tebow’s NFL career.

*Urban Meyer was in the house and spotted talking to Dolphins owner Stephen Ross. Do you think Ross offered him the job right there and then?

His first pass of the day should have been intercepted by Karlos Dansby. There were times when it appeared that he had no idea what he was doing. And it was clear John Fox didn’t trust him enough to run a fourth and 1 play (instead, Matt Prater missed his second field goal of the day).

Broncos fans applauded when the Broncos first announced that Kyle Orton would be replaced by Tebow as the starting quarterback, and today, their judgment has been vindicated. But it’s only temporary. At least Orton is a quarterback that looks like a professional athlete most of the time he plays. Tebow looks like a pro athlete as well. But not as a quarterback. Maybe as a tight end. Maybe as an H-back. Hell, maybe as a linebacker.

But not as a quarterback.

He overthrew a wide-open Eric Decker on a long pass that would have yielded a touchdown. He threw too high. For most of the day, he made Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore look like the best signal-caller on the field. By far.

Midway through the fourth quarter, Tebow had been sacked five times while completing four passes (he finished 13 of 27 for 161 yards and two touchdowns while rushing eight times for 65 yards). He led a nice drive late in the fourth quarter to get his team on the scoreboard, and he kept it up after Denver recovered an onside kick. But he was mostly making do with screen passes, short-yardage throws and scrambles.

The stats don’t look as bad as Tebow performed Sunday. But it was an anomaly, a fluke.

What does it mean for this Broncos season that is still a lost cause? Fox can’t go back to Orton now, but would he if Tebow continues to struggle? What about Brady Quinn -- who, like Orton, is in the final year of his contract?

Or maybe, just maybe, this is some elaborate conspiracy plan to secure the services of Andrew Luck. Sure, that’s a ridiculous notion and it backfired Sunday. But is it that much more ridiculous than implying that Tebow is a legitimate NFL starting quarterback? Even with today’s result, I’d say no.

After all, you shouldn’t see the mirage for the trees.

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Posted on: October 11, 2011 7:59 pm
Edited on: October 11, 2011 8:31 pm

Urban Meyer believes in Tim Tebow

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

You might have heard a little something about this young second-year quarterback named Tim Tebow taking over as the Broncos starting quarterback (if not, I’d like to hear about what you’ve been up to these past couple days).

We’ve heard from Denver coach John Fox (“It's not one guy. It's not all Kyle Orton's fault.”). We’ve heard from Broncos running back Willis McGahee (“He gave us a spark. That's Tim Tebow”). We’ve heard from Orton ("I'm disappointed with everything.”). And, of course, we’ve heard from Tebow (“It’s an honor and a privilege,” and you can see more in the video below.).

Stop...Tebow Time?
So, who does that leave to comment about the story? Ah yes, Urban Meyer, Tebow’s coach at Florida. Luckily, NFL.com tracked him down, and when asked if he thought Tebow was ready, Meyer said it would depend on if the team was ready.

"Will Tim be a success?" Meyer asked. "The question is, will the Broncos be a success? That's the question. Not so much Tim -- will the Broncos improve their play where they can go win a game?"

When you answer a question with another question, that can’t bode well, can it?

"I know one thing: A quarterback can only do so much," Meyer said. "He's a product of those around him. If everybody can play a little better, Denver could have a chance to win. Quarterbacks get far too much credit and far too much criticism. He needs to have those guys around him really step up their play as well."

Meyer speaks the truth. Which is why Orton must feel frustrated and disappointed. Because if we go by Meyer’s theory, Orton* took a whole heap of unwarranted abuse for the play of his teammates, while Tebow (despite ordinary-looking stats and ordinary-looking play, minus the times he used his legs) got a whole bunch of credit for leading Denver to the almost-win Sunday.

“For the record, before entering last Sunday’s game, where Orton was pretty terrible, he had completed 59.9 percent of his passes for an average of 236 yards per game, eight touchdowns and six interceptions. So, Orton wasn’t that bad.

Still, Meyer truly thinks Tebow can succeed in the NFL, even if he’s one of the few believers.

"I'm a lover of the game of football, and football still comes down to toughness, intelligence, energy, sacrifice and getting a team to play well," Meyer said. "When it comes to all of those things, Tim is as good as anyone who has played the game."

Now, Tebow just has to work on that accuracy thing, and he’ll be good to go.

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Posted on: August 29, 2011 11:59 pm

Why are the Dolphins going to honor the Gators?

TebowPosted by Josh Katzowitz

University of Miami fans just cannot catch a break, you know?

First, there was that minor issue that Yahoo Sports reported that had something to do with some minor booster giving a few players a few bucks here and there to help them find companionship and to buy some sandwiches and soda pops. Or something along those lines.

If that wasn’t bad enough, now the Dolphins are planning to honor former Florida quarterback Tim Tebow and the 2009 national championship when the Broncos come to town in October (Dolphins center Mike Pouncey -- a member of that Florida title team -- obviously will be in attendance, along with former coach Urban Meyer).

Not surprisingly, this bit of news was insulting to Miami fans from a Dolphins perspective and from a Miami Hurricanes perspective. Still, Dolphins CEO Mike Dee defended himself, saying it was a way to generate ticket sales. And besides, he said, he offered the same kind of celebration to the University of Miami for the 10-year anniversary of the Hurricanes last national championship.

"They politely declined and said that they were going to do something to honor that team at one of their own home games," Dee said, via the South Florida Sun Sentinel. "We reached out to both schools at about the same time in early to mid July."

But what about the fact you share your building with the Hurricanes -- who, as you might know, aren’t huge fans of the Gators?
"I know they both have very passionate fan bases,” Dee said. “We certainly root for the 'Canes. They are a partner of ours, a tenant of ours.

"As it relates to having to aggressively market the Dolphins and tickets to our games, we have to be agnostic. We can't not reach out to Dolphins fans who are also Gators fans and try to give them an incentive and a reason to come to a Dolphins game."

Yes, but antagonizing the Hurricanes fans who also attend Dolphins contests probably isn’t the smartest way to accomplish that feat.

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Posted on: December 9, 2010 10:05 pm
Edited on: December 9, 2010 11:18 pm

Urban Meyer: 'I'm not coaching next season'

Posted by Will Brinson

Urban Meyer decided to suddenly up and retire yesterday and it took all of negative 10 seconds for everyone in the world to at least ponder whether or not he was considering a run at coaching Tim Tebow again with the Denver Broncos.

Well, all you jerkstores who decided to speculate on that silly possibility (oh, wait, was that me?) can shut up. Because Meyer says he's not coaching next season.

"I'm not coaching next season," Meyer said with a smile when asked about the Denver rumors.

He was also referring to the possibility that he'd coach at Michigan too (even though they don't even have an opening).

Look, the Meyer discussion yesterday was absolutely, 100 percent speculation. That was clear when we discussed it, and no one actually thought a) Meyer would be silly enough to randomly make a run at the NFL or b) the Broncos would be silly enough to make a run at a guy with no NFL head coaching experience.

But Tebow and Meyer are forever intertwined because of their success at Florida, so when the opportunity to coach Tebow opens up and two days later Meyer quits his current job, well, people are at least going to ask.

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Posted on: December 8, 2010 2:49 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2010 3:27 pm

Urban Meyer to the Denver Broncos? Maybe?

Posted by Will Brinson

On Wednesday, the Florida Gators announced that Urban Meyer stepped down as head coach of the Florida Gators. Needless to say, his tenure there was spectacular -- two national titles and an unbelievable run with Tim Tebow under center.

Which brings us to the NFL side of things, since the Denver Broncos, the team that happens to have Tebow under contract, are currently seeking a full-time coach who can restore their franchise to glory after they canned Josh McDaniels on Monday.

This is obviously pure speculation, because there are tons of reasons it wouldn't make sense. Namely, college coaches typically fail in the NFL. Additionally, Meyer, for all of his success in the college ranks, has no experience in the NFL, which certainly plays against the notion that the Broncos would want to hire a coach with experience reviving a program.

On the other hand, having Tebow on the roster makes for an unpleasant scenario for most coaches -- it seems pretty likely that other executives would have used that 25th overall pick in 2010 differently. Meyer, presumably, would have no problem convincing himself that he could help Tebow succeed at the next level (even if logic says that Tebow can't be a great NFL quarterback).

Next, take a look at the success the Broncos have had this year, which has come only offensively: it's primarily based on McDaniels system allowing Kyle Orton and a rag-tag-but-talented group of wide receivers to succeed. Meyer could easily believe that his own system could achieve the same success.

Would Meyer demand personnel control in Denver? Likely not, given this would be his first run in the NFL as a head coach, and that could be one of the sticking points for Denver going forward, because of McDaniels' inability to properly manage personnel.

There's no obvious John Elway/Pat Bowlen/Joe Ellis connection here, so the speculation for putting Urban Meyer as the new head coach of the Denver Broncos revolves entirely around the fact that less than 48 hours after Tim Tebow's boss was fired, Meyer suddenly (and quite unexpectedly) resigned from his post at Florida.

This was his second resignation, so it's as if it wasn't some sort of possibility of him leaving the Gators. And -- as my college colleague Adam Jacobi wrote -- if Meyer's in bad shape health-wise (again) it seems pretty unlikely that he would leave for an NFL job.

But the timing of the moves are begging for some speculation as to whether or not Meyer could succumb to the lure of coaching Tebow again.

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