Michael Silver wrote an excellent article for GQ about the NFL’s reaction to Tim Tebow from Week 8 through the playoffs. The article received plenty of attention because of the critical quotes from Tebow’s teammate, Brady Quinn. Quinn clarified his comments and said they were taken out of context, which if you read the entire article, you probably would agree; his comments fit in with several other critical comments about Tebow, the only difference is most of the critical folks were either commentators or members of opposing teams.
One of the most biting remarks came from Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs.
“They say we were giving him a hard time because he’s a Christian. No, that’s not it! We were giving him a hard time because he was terrible,” Suggs reportedly said after the Lions destroyed the Broncos in Week 8.
When the Broncos lost three in a row to end the regular season, Suggs piled on.
“I mean, it’s an insult to us players. You know, wins are hard to come by in this league, and if I was Denver’s defense, I would feel a certain way—they’re not allowed to [say it], ’cause they’re all on one team, but people are making it look like Tim Tebow is the kid from Foxboro—which, that couldn’t be more opposite. It’s just crazy that we’re calling him a phenomenon when basically he’s mediocre. Cam Newton’s a way better quarterback than Tim Tebow, and we don’t have a Cam Newton phenomenon.”
He wasn’t the only one with negative feelings about Tebow, and Quinn wasn’t the only person uncomfortable with Tebow pushing religion.
“I think it does rub some of the guys the wrong way,” Bills linebacker Nick Barnett said. “For a lot of Christians, using football as a measuring stick of how good God is—it’s not necessarily what you’re supposed to be doing.”
The negative comments from Suggs about Tebow are nothing new. He made similar comments in early January about the Broncos lucking out in games, but he was shocked after Denver’s playoff win. The entire article is really worth a read because it shows the way people’s thoughts about Tebow evolved throughout the season.
As I’ve said before, I don’t think Tim Tebow will have continued success if he doesn’t improve as a passer. He knows that, and that’s why he’s working hard on improving. He has a lot of work to do.
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