FanDuel - WFBC

September 09, 2013

Columnist: 'Miserable Jaguars Must Sign Tim Tebow Immediately': The Jacksonville Jaguars lost 28-2 to the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday. The offense led by quarterback Blaine Gabbert was so bad Jacksonville didn't advance beyond its own 36-yard line until four minutes into the fourth quarter. Since the Chiefs were the NFL's worst team last year by record, it suggests a miserable year ahead for the nattily behatted Two-Tones. Orlando Sentinel columnist Mike Bianchi, a former sportswriter in Jacksonville, gazes in despair and asks, "What's the worst that could happen if they signed Tebow? ... The Jaguars are already miserable. So what if they continue their misery under Tebow?"

posted by rcade to football at 07:17 PM - 59 comments

When the Jets signed Tim Tebow, I wanted him in Jacksonville because I thought the prospects of the Jaguars doing anything under Blaine Gabbert were so slim that it was worth the gamble on Tebow, based on 3,000 to 5,000 extra season ticket sales and huge national media attention and jersey sales.

The Jags have a quarterback worse than Tebow. They weren't competitive at home against last season's worst team, so they're looking like the early favorite for next year's No. 1 pick.

The new Jags coach and GM won't sign him. They'd be putting their own future in his hands instead of having a couple years where they can play the "rebuilding" excuse.

But man did it make sense last season. GM Gene Smith and Coach Mike Mularkey might even still be here, because fans here would've given Tebow 2-3 seasons to prove himself.

posted by rcade at 07:28 PM on September 09

The Jags have a quarterback worse than Tebow. They weren't competitive at home against last season's worst team, so they're looking like the early favorite for next year's No. 1 pick.

And a plethora of QBs likely to be available in the draft. I would never advocate tanking for a draft pick, but if you're going to be bad and you're talking about a guy who will require a radical redefinition of your offense after the season starts and might still not actually be useful even if you do that... yeah, they won't want the headache.

posted by Etrigan at 08:44 PM on September 09

Has anyone seen Mike Bianchi and Rogers Cadenhead in the same room?

I wish they would sign Tebow. Finally an end to the saga. Either he proves to be the completely incompetent quarterback most believe he is, or he proves everyone wrong. Good story line.

posted by justgary at 08:49 PM on September 09

Tebow wouldn't require a radical overhaul of the offense. It's already built around a quarterback who can't throw the ball.

I was hoping the new braintrust would sign Alex Smith. Gabbert and Chad Henne offer no hope. Henne isn't Gabbert bad, but he's mediocre at best.

posted by rcade at 08:58 PM on September 09

I wish they would sign Tebow. Finally an end to the saga. Either he proves to be the completely incompetent quarterback most believe he is, or he proves everyone wrong.

If winning a playoff game in Denver didn't do it, nothing will. The True Believers will always have an excuse.

  • "The coach/OC didn't really want him, so they didn't design plays that really use him."
  • "The team half-assed getting the right RBs/WRs for his style."
  • "It wasn't his fault they had to play [insert good team in division here] twice and [insert other good team on schedule] away/in November."
  • "Yeah, but how many of those losses were by less than a TD? So basically, he was a few bad calls away from the playoffs."
  • "You can't judge him on one/two seasons -- look at how bad Drew Brees' first two years were."
And so on and so forth. For the saga to truly end, some team has to let itself be destroyed for about five years.

posted by Etrigan at 09:04 PM on September 09

Destroying these Jags would be redundant.

I think Jacksonville finally has a decent receiving corps, too, for the first time since Jimmy Smith and Keenan McCardell.

posted by rcade at 09:18 PM on September 09

"You can't judge him on one/two seasons -- look at how bad Drew Brees' first two years were."

This is a valid argument for quarterbacks (though obviously not for Tebow any more).

I heard a Giants exec talking about this subject over the weekend on Mike Lupica's radio show. Top quarterbacks often start out terrible, which makes it tough to give up on one you've drafted to anchor your team, no matter how bad he is.

The only argument for Tebow is how bad things are in his hometown.

posted by rcade at 09:23 PM on September 09

Where are the Gabbert people in all this, claiming that he's just having his bad seasons right now? (Answer: there probably are no Gabbert people)

It's getting harder to make a case for being patient with poor QB play as guys like Wilson and Griffin come into the league, start as rookies, and do well right away. Now lots of teams probably think they can land a plug and play QB.

I remember what Bradshaw's NFL beginning was like. It was brutal.

posted by beaverboard at 09:34 PM on September 09

So were the Steelers ... wonder if Bradshaw's career turned around?

The Tebow believers go on one-half season of "success" in Denver. They talk about the wins, ignoring that the comebacks followed three horrible quarters. 46-percent completion rate in 2011; 1,728 yards passing but needed just about every one of his 660 rushing yards to survive.

posted by jjzucal at 10:00 PM on September 09

Last year...


This year...


Plus ca change.

At least those uniforms are... interesting.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:06 PM on September 09

Top quarterbacks often start out terrible, which makes it tough to give up on one you've drafted to anchor your team, no matter how bad he is.

[jigger statz]

Peyton Manning threw more INT than TD his first season.
Drew Brees threw almost as many INT as TD his first season.
Dan Marino was a stud from the get go.
Brett Favre was terrible his second season.
John Elway threw more INT than TD his first season.
Tom Brady was good enough his first full season.
Joe Montana was pretty good his first full season(s).
Jim Kelly was pretty good his first full season.
Johnny Unitas threw more INT than TD his first (half) season.
Troy Aikman was terrible his first season.
Steve Young was not good in his first seasons in Tampa Bay.
Ben Roethlisberger was okay for two seasons, and then TERRIBLE his third.
Aaron Rodgers has been a stud since given the full time role.

posted by grum@work at 11:20 PM on September 09

The Jags have a quarterback worse than Tebow

Tebow has the least physical skills for anyone I've ever seen drafted as a QB in the NFL. He does have a great attitude and is a proven winner. Maybe folks in Florida buy tickets to see him in a Jags uniform. But the best he could ever become is a game manager ala Jim McMahon / Phil Sims ... and he doesn't have the ability either of those guys had, and certainly won't be headed to a team where he is surrounded by talent as they were. Or as he was in Denver.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:43 PM on September 09

Tebow has the least physical skills for anyone I've ever seen drafted as a QB in the NFL

Why does everything have to be such an extreme? He has a shitty throwing motion. He clearly does not have the worst toolkit of anyone ever drafted.

posted by yerfatma at 07:59 AM on September 10

If Tebow were signed by the Jags and did lead them to a few wins, does that mean that we SpoFites would become the lunchmeat in a Skip Bayless - rcade sandwich?

posted by beaverboard at 08:13 AM on September 10

Tebow has the least physical skills for anyone I've ever seen drafted as a QB in the NFL.

Just out of curiosity, how many Blaine Gabbert games have you watched?

posted by rcade at 09:02 AM on September 10

He won't be signed this year. It must be three seasons before he rises from the dead.

posted by tron7 at 09:51 AM on September 10

The Jags have confirmed they'll be starting Chad Henne this week.

He has an excellent mustache. Which is key.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:03 AM on September 10

Wonder if the Jags now wish they had traded down and taken Manuel from FSU. Even though he doesn't have Tebow's otherworldly appeal, he's still a big regional star and thus far looks a heck of a lot more like a legitimate pro QB.

Henne looks like a bona fide C&W star with that mustache.

posted by beaverboard at 10:06 AM on September 10

That's a Wooderson 'stache!

You just gotta keep passin' man, P-A-S-S-I-N.

posted by rcade at 11:02 AM on September 10

He clearly does not have the worst toolkit of anyone ever drafted.

Really? Name me a quarterback drafted as a quarterback that is incapable of throwing a football in an NFL offense. He's essentially a fullback who can toss out of the option. He had more rushing attempts in college than pass completions.

how many Blaine Gabbert games have you watched?

Fair enough, none actually. But Gabbert isn't the biggest problem in Jax. He was sacked 6 times against KC, the 20th rated defense from last year. His primary receivers are Cecil Shorts, Allen Reisner, and Ace Sanders (apologies if I've spelled the names wrong as I've never heard of any of these guys). And with the 30th ranked rushing offense the only thing the Jags can do is let Gabbert throw. You want Tebow in that offense? You might improve to the 25th ranked rushing offense ... but you think putting Tebow in a situation where he needs to throw 35 plus passes a game is a good situation for the team or the player?

Maybe (a big maybe) Tebow can direct a run first offense where his job is to eat clock and give a good defense a rest, somewhere like Cleveland comes to mind.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:59 AM on September 10

I find it interesting that -- speaking of the Jags -- Denard Robinson was drafted as a running back and is being used as a running back and does not appear to be complaining about being a running back, and no one else (even we Michigan Persons who loved and hated watching him as a quarterback) is complaining about his being a running back.

And yet, even a Tebow detractor is willing to say that he has "a great attitude" despite his stated preference for not playing at all over converting to anything but quarterback.

posted by Etrigan at 12:04 PM on September 10

Fair enough, none actually. But Gabbert isn't the biggest problem in Jax.

Impressive.

posted by yerfatma at 12:37 PM on September 10

Name me a quarterback drafted as a quarterback that is incapable of throwing a football in an NFL offense.

Ryan Leaf.

posted by dfleming at 12:49 PM on September 10

His primary receivers are Cecil Shorts, Allen Reisner, and Ace Sanders (apologies if I've spelled the names wrong as I've never heard of any of these guys).

His primary receivers are Cecil Shorts, last year's fifth overall pick Justin Blackmon (suspended) and tight end Marcedes Lewis (injured). You should have heard of Shorts. He's good, and has potential to be great.

And with the 30th ranked rushing offense the only thing the Jags can do is let Gabbert throw.

You've forgotten the Jags have Maurice Jones-Drew. The 30th ranking was because he was out 10 games last year. He's healthy this season.

The offensive problem in Jacksonville is quarterback. Period. Gabbert has no idea what he's doing. When he isn't holding onto the ball too long or getting happy feet or throwing 10 feet above a receiver's head, he's doing things like this: Tamba Hali pick six on Saturday. How did he not see Hali standing there before throwing the soft screen pass right to him?

posted by rcade at 12:55 PM on September 10

Name me a quarterback drafted as a quarterback that is incapable of throwing a football in an NFL offense.

Ryan Leaf.

...still had a higher completion percentage than Tim Tebow.

posted by grum@work at 12:57 PM on September 10

I would argue that Ryan Leaf was incapable of running an NFL offense, but was a competent thrower. He just didn't understand the gap in quality between college and the pros, while Peyton Manning*, for instance was more prepared and willing to put in the effort to improve.

* -- Recall that they put up similar numbers in a head-to-head SD-Indy game their first year, except that Leaf's line let him get sacked more, possibly because he's an acknowledged dickhead.

posted by Etrigan at 12:59 PM on September 10

And yet, even a Tebow detractor is willing to say that he has "a great attitude" despite his stated preference for not playing at all over converting to anything but quarterback.

That's a reach. I don't see how latching onto a roster as a backup TE is more noble than not playing.

posted by tron7 at 01:09 PM on September 10

Ryan Leaf.

...still had a higher completion percentage than Tim Tebow.

And a pick rate twice what Tebow had, a lower yards/attempt and fewer TD's thrown for despite nearly 300 more attempts.

The challenge wasn't whether he was worse than Tebow though - the challenge was whether anyone could name an NFL quarterback who was incapable of throwing a football in an NFL offense. Ryan Leaf had a relatively standard throwing motion, but was +/-5 yards of his receiver.

I think Tebow does not belong as a QB in the NFL, but he's not the first or the last guy drafted who that is true about. The only difference between Tebow and, say, Ryan Leaf, is people think he's capable of playing another position or has a skillset other than QB that may be valuable.

posted by dfleming at 01:16 PM on September 10

If someone came to Tebow and said, "You'd make a great fullback, and here's the offense we've designed to take advantage of that, and sure, maybe you can throw the occasional pass," he has said that he would decline that offer. That's not "a great attitude," it's selfish. "Noble" has nothing to do with it either way.

posted by Etrigan at 01:17 PM on September 10

That's not "a great attitude," it's selfish.

If you trained to be an engineer, but someone came to you offering for you to become a janitor and drew you up a plan to get you there and explained how it'd help your work team, would you consider that person to be selfish for saying no?

Before answering, consider that the step down from an engineer to a janitor does relate to the step down to being a fullback - prestige, money and work are all lower at one than the other.

What if he was great at selling cars - should he do that too because others say so? Nobody lives their life like that. That's an impossible standard.

It's not like he's holding out on a team or causing them any unrest - by all accounts, even while sitting on the bench on the Jets, he cheered his teammates on, practiced hard and played special teams.

Selfish is something we all are by having preferences for what we want to do with our life, but there's nothing inherently wrong with it so long as it isn't hurting anyone. Tebow being a FA is not hurting a soul other than himself.

posted by dfleming at 01:31 PM on September 10

That hypothetical scenario seems unmoored to reality, Etrigan. If Belichick didn't try him as a fullback or tight end, why does anyone believe those positions are enough of a possibility for Tebow to give up on what he wants to do?

posted by rcade at 01:32 PM on September 10

Here's a story on how Denard Robinson is handling the no-obvious-position dilemma. He's an exciting player to watch. I'm hoping to see the Jags do some cool things with him.

posted by rcade at 01:36 PM on September 10

Tebow wouldn't require a radical overhaul of the offense. It's already built around a quarterback who can't throw the ball.

I disagree. Tim Tebow is quite capable of throwing the football. Just don't ask him to throw it to the vicinity of an eligible receiver.

If you trained to be an engineer, but someone came to you offering for you to become a janitor and drew you up a plan to get you there and explained how it'd help your work team, would you consider that person to be selfish for saying no?

If trading the engineer job for the janitor job meant keeping all of your retirement benefits, still earning a decent salary -- including overtime pay that you didn't get as an engineer -- and not having to relocate in order to get another engineering job, it would be worth taking the janitor position. Something like this actually happened to a colleague of mine. He was threatened with a layoff and was offered the job of security guard. He took this job, and within 5 years was back to engineering with an increase in position and commensurate pay increases. The point is that if it's a job you can do, can result in your staying within the game, and has the possibility that you can improve your skills through work, thereby getting your old position back, you would be smart to take it.

posted by Howard_T at 01:56 PM on September 10

Tebow being a FA is not hurting a soul other than himself.

I'm not saying he is. I'm saying it's not "a great attitude." His on-field attitude is probably pretty good -- no one appears to dislike him for that reason -- but I don't like the (alleged) "I'm only going to be a quarterback" declaration, especially after he's had three teams tell him that he's not good enough to be their quarterback (including one led by an indisputable HOF coach and one that is so dysfunctional that I'm not entirely certain I wasn't their third-string quarterback for a couple of weeks over the summer) after they've had a good look at him and many others tell him that they don't even want to bother looking.

A great attitude would be, "I would love to help a team any way I could," or even "I would certainly listen to anyone who thought I could help their team," not "Nah, I'd rather not play than consider not being the quarterback." His attitude isn't horrible -- he's certainly not the worst human being to come out of Florida recently -- but it's not great.

posted by Etrigan at 02:08 PM on September 10

Howard_T: Just because it worked out doesn't mean that was a smart decision. He could've been stuck as a security guard when another employer would've hired him as an engineer. He could've never been hired back as an engineer and had to pursue his next job with security guard as his last job title. Glad it worked out for him, but I wouldn't take that deal in a million years.

posted by rcade at 02:08 PM on September 10

If trading the engineer job for the janitor job meant keeping all of your retirement benefits, still earning a decent salary -- including overtime pay that you didn't get as an engineer -- and not having to relocate in order to get another engineering job, it would be worth taking the janitor position.

Right, but that would all be selfish thinking - what's best for me. The argument Etrigan made was that it would be selfish to do anything but blindly accept what others suggest you should do to help the team.

None of us would hold ourselves up to that standard, so I'm not sure how we could have anyone with a "great" attitude in this scenario. We all have preferences and things we don't want to do in our jobs (take a pay cut, a demotion, go from engineer to janitor knowing it's a permanent move, whatever) and the idea that the only way to have a great attitude is to abandon those preferences is just not a realistic thing to expect of anyone.

His on-field attitude is probably pretty good -- no one appears to dislike him for that reason -- but I don't like the (alleged) "I'm only going to be a quarterback" declaration, especially after he's had three teams tell him that he's not good enough to be their quarterback (including one led by an indisputable HOF coach and one that is so dysfunctional that I'm not entirely certain I wasn't their third-string quarterback for a couple of weeks over the summer) after they've had a good look at him and many others tell him that they don't even want to bother looking.

For the record, Jeff Garcia and Doug Flutie both went through that, went to the CFL to continue being a quarterback, and returned. The idea that the current market is the forever market is crazy, especially consider Jacksonville in theory is desperate for a QB and to sell tickets.

posted by dfleming at 02:15 PM on September 10

The argument Etrigan made was that it would be selfish to do anything but blindly accept what others suggest you should do to help the team.

No, I didn't. I argued that it was selfish not even to consider such suggestions.

For the record, Jeff Garcia and Doug Flutie both went through that, went to the CFL to continue being a quarterback, and returned.

Tebow has apparently said that he won't go to the CFL either.

posted by Etrigan at 02:23 PM on September 10

Although I gaze upon Jacksonville and despair, the Two-Tones are not desperate. There hasn't been a TV blackout in several years, and the new coach and GM can likely count on a honeymoon period while they retool the entire franchise.

Owner Shahid Khan wants to sell more club tickets -- there's a lot of fans disguised as teal seats in EverBank's most expensive sections -- but he seems to be on a long-term plan with Gus Bradley and David Caldwell. He also has a cool new toy to play with.

posted by rcade at 02:26 PM on September 10

Imagine you were an award winning model airplane designer, but your dream was to design real airplanes. You sent your resume around but the only job the airplane companies would offer you was to take the blueprints the engineers created and make the wind tunnel model. When you tell them that you want to design real airplanes they tell you that you don't really have the skills for that and would require going back to school and learning all kinds of things, things that you so far haven't shown any ability for, but your current skill set you let you excel at the wind tunnel model maker. Who isn't being realistic, you or the airplane companies?

posted by oxocerite at 02:35 PM on September 10

Tebow has apparently said that he won't go to the CFL either.

With a wider and longer field, it would just mean more ground for the ball to hit...

As well, with one less down to use, he'd be under pressure to attempt even MORE passes than he has ever tried before.

Either this crucible would forge him into a respectable passer, or the cracks in his skill set would be split wide open for all to see (and finally acknowledge).

I think if he has any hope of becoming a QB in the NFL, a short stint in the CFL would definitely be his last/best chance (if the Jags don't cave and sign him). Like mentioned above, Garcia, Flutie, Theisman, and Moon have all done well in the CFL (with Theisman being the best match, taking a 7-year circuitous route to becoming a starting QB in the NFL).

posted by grum@work at 02:42 PM on September 10

What if he was great at selling cars - should he do that too because others say so?

He may not have any choice in the matter.

It's a sound career for a football has-been. People love buying cars from big-time ex-jocks, plus he'd corner the local born-again market. He could make a lot of money that way, and he'd have a better chance of living past 45 with his faculties intact than he would if he worked for the NFL.

posted by Hugh Janus at 04:17 PM on September 10

he'd have a better chance of living past 45 with his faculties intact than he would if he worked for the NFL.

As a counterpoint, Terry Bradshaw sold cars.

posted by Etrigan at 04:30 PM on September 10

Tebow has apparently said that he won't go to the CFL either.

No chance Tebow could be successful in the CFL at QB. It's a passing game with a wider field requiring a strong accurate arm and ability to read defense. QBs who survive in the CFL do so based on their pocket passing abilities.

The CFL team who owns his rights has said it has no interest in him as a QB. That same team's current starting QB is 41 years old and into his 2nd game of 9 on the DL with a concussion (great player but obviously near the end of his run). His team has a 4 and 6 record, and they still have no interest.

But ... opinions are just that.

Ultimately nothing re Tebow will be resolved until he actually gets a 4th chance as a QB somewhere.

posted by cixelsyd at 04:43 PM on September 10

When I lived in Denver John Elway's car dealerships were all over the tube. He sold them to AutoNation in 1997 for $82.5 million.

posted by rcade at 05:16 PM on September 10

Well, one of us has got to find a way to keep Tebow relevant and rostered, because he is a virtually unmatched generator of motivated responses on this site.

Know him among ye as the anti - Dick Jauron.

There is only one individual in the world of sports at the moment who has generated a greater volume of opinions and discussion on SpoFi than Tebow has.

That would be Jerry Sandusky.

posted by beaverboard at 05:39 PM on September 10

He does have a great attitude and is a proven winner.

Is that code for white and untalented?

I don't get the whole proven winner thing we hear again and again. He was a great college quarterback because his skill set was perfect for what was required and he was surrounded by talent.

He's failed in the NFL because his skill set sucks for what an NFL team requires of an NFL quarterback. That's the difference between his being a winner or loser, not some innate talent at 'winning'.

plus he'd corner the local born-again market.

Yeah, he only needs to sell cars if he wants pocket change. He could be a christian speaker and say no more than he says in one of his cliched interviews and rake in millions a year. No one needs to feel bad for Tebow.

posted by justgary at 06:03 PM on September 10

He does have a great attitude and is a proven winner. Is that code for white and untalented?

I see his next team . . .

posted by yerfatma at 06:15 PM on September 10

Baha.

posted by Etrigan at 06:52 PM on September 10

Is that code for white and untalented?

No, that would be "tahoemoj"

posted by tahoemoj at 07:00 PM on September 10

There is only one individual in the world of sports at the moment who has generated a greater volume of opinions and discussion on SpoFi than Tebow has.

That would be Jerry Sandusky.

Hmmm...If I had to guess the order of comment generation...

Woods - most consistent with barely any low point
Tebow - multiple years
Sandusky - strong peak but short career
Vick - strong peak with a long tail
Bonds - most divisive but fading fast
Rodriguez - multiple peaks with a chance for a big finale
Wie or Patrick - top female
Rose - most comments without doing anything

posted by grum@work at 09:58 PM on September 10

A great attitude would be, "I would love to help a team any way I could," or even "I would certainly listen to anyone who thought I could help their team,"

Says you. I don't find it especially great. I see it as the players preference and similar to deciding to retire when you still could conceivably help a team.

Hmmm...If I had to guess the order of comment generation...

TO had a pretty good run.

posted by tron7 at 02:11 AM on September 11

Maybe Tebow should have played for Woody Hayes.

Rex Kern QB'ed the Buckeyes in the late 60's. He was a wizard with the ball, threw and ran well too.

His team went undefeated in the regular season twice, went to two Rose Bowls up against two Heisman winners. Beat USC (and won the national championship - hell of a game) and lost to Stanford.

Kern was in the Top 5 Heisman vote getters his last 2 years of college. He got drafted in the middle/late rounds and promptly suited up to play DB for the Colts. Started and did well. Never said a thing about his position change. Just took a new number, studied what he needed to learn, laced up and went. Would have played longer in the pros if not for injuries.

That's my idea of a versatile, accomplished athlete with a realistic outlook.

posted by beaverboard at 08:25 AM on September 11

Hmmm...If I had to guess the order of comment generation...

A few of those (Bonds particularly comes to mind) were big in the news back when SpoFi was a little bigger as well. Bonds threads would regularly hit triple digit comments.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 08:33 AM on September 11

Hmmm...If I had to guess the order of comment generation...

Woods - most consistent with barely any low point
Tebow - multiple years
Sandusky - strong peak but short career
Vick - strong peak with a long tail
Bonds - most divisive but fading fast
Rodriguez - multiple peaks with a chance for a big finale
Wie or Patrick - top female
Rose - most comments without doing anything

The less said about Mr. Maddux, the better off we'll all be.

posted by NoMich at 09:06 AM on September 11

The less said about Mr. Maddux, the better off we'll all be.

Tell that to the Hookers....

posted by Debo270 at 09:58 AM on September 11

Don't forget T.O., grum.

posted by holden at 10:09 AM on September 11

Tell that to the Hookers....

If only we could, Debo. If only we could!

posted by rcade at 12:21 PM on September 11

Denver basically pulled out a high school playbook in order to use Tebow, I don't see another team willing to do that no matter how bad they are.

posted by bo_fan at 09:14 AM on September 12

He does have a great attitude and is a proven winner.

Is that code for white and untalented?

Pretty much. Also see 'having a high motor' or being called a 'gym rat'.

posted by BornIcon at 08:45 PM on September 12

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