Denver Broncos  

 

Closer look at dramatic finish in Miami reveals Tebow's flaws

Yes, a Tim Tebow sermon is about to commence. I'll wait for the shock and awe to subside.

Awe really is the operative word where Tebow is concerned. But it's time to reduce some of the hero worship and look at where his game is headed in the near future, one that doesn't always look so bright.

The second-year quarterback continues to receive a lot of attention for Sunday's incredible win in Miami, and for his ability to produce fantasy points (22.9 on NFL.com scoring). It's time to tap the brakes, though, because much of that production, and the plays that ultimately decided the Miami game, were of the fluky variety and came about because of great efforts by his teammates.

On the first touchdown pass, Tebow used his ridiculous athleticism to make a play, but the reality is that the catch (and concentration) by Demaryius Thomas was the difference on a ball that could have been thrown a lot better.

Tebow got a lot of love for a 28-yard completion over the middle to Daniel Fells during the last minute of regulation. Yet, the pass was a wobbler that required a nothing-short-of-spectacular catch by Fells.

Give Tebow some credit, as he miraculously put the ball where only Fells could really get to it. Whether the Broncos quarterback intended the ball to go there instead of where it was supposed to go (Fells' back shoulder) is another story. Rather than dangerously trying to wedge it between three defenders, Tebow could have hit an open Eric Decker on a deep out near the sideline at the 14, which would have stopped the clock with just under 50 seconds to go. He missed that read.

Finally, Tebow's second touchdown pass on a tight-end screen to Fells was a brilliant call by offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, and a blown assignment by the Dolphins secondary. The play merely required that Tebow lob the ball to Fells.

Does this suggest these were poor plays by Denver's quarterback? No. But it's hard to give a guy credit for playing a good game, much less winning it, when he stunk up the joint for three-plus quarters and got some big help from his ancillary parts, like Thomas and Fells. Had Tebow launched several beauties -- or just plain accurate throws -- throughout the game, it would be easier to lay accolades at his feet.

That said, don't count me among the Tebow "haters" who dislike him for all sorts of dumb, misguided reasons. Let us just temper expectations regarding his ability.

This weekend, he'll face a front four that's much more talented than Miami's, and Detroit's secondary is giving up the fewest plays of 20-plus yards in the league. This figures to be a tough matchup for a player who clearly is still in the learning stages of playing quarterback.

Again, Tebow's athleticism is unique to his position, but if he keeps attempting to run over linemen and linebackers against the Lions like he did in Miami, he might be learning while in the training room.

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