Plenty of reason to believe, doubt the Broncos will make playoffs

Everyone saw Tim Tebow's last-minute heroics in the Broncos' thrilling 17-13 win over the Jets on Thursday night. It was Denver's third straight win, and fourth of five overall with Tebow as the starting quarterback. So can Tebow lead the 5-5 Broncos to the playoffs?

  • Jeff Darlington NFL.com
  • Wouldn't be smart to doubt potential, or expect success

In the wake of Tim Tebow's win against the Jets, the opinions about Tebow once again remained divided. Some remain repulsed by the praise. Others remain giddy by the continued and unlikely success. As someone who is enjoying this show for what it's worth, I feel the need to help the faction of annoyed fans understand one way of thinking:

Just because I'm enjoying Tebow Time, it doesn't mean I don't recognize Von Miller was the reason for the Broncos' success. It doesn't mean I think Denver could beat the Packers. It doesn't mean I don't recognize the ineptitude of the Jets' offense.

The Broncos have at least three losable games ahead against the Patriots, the Bears and the Chargers. That's enough to knock them out of contention. But rather doubting the potential or expecting success, I'm taking the John Fox approach: One game at a time, one fourth-quarter at a time. I'll enjoy the show -- and see where Denver stands in the end.

  • Steve Wyche NFL.com
  • Oakland will win division, but Denver could nab wild-card

I still don't think Denver is a playoff team, but my doubt really is soft on this one. Denver's remaining schedule is pretty rugged but the AFC West is wide open -- as are the two AFC wild-card spots. After what Tebow has been able to do, most notably rally in the fourth quarter and get his teammates to believe, it's almost crazy to think that anything is out of reach.

I still am thinking that Oakland wins the division and at least one wild-card comes from the AFC North. The other spot? Let me do some Tebowing and get back to you later.

  • Adam Rank NFL.com
  • The Broncos will make the playoffs

I'm done doubting Tim Tebow. I just can't do it anymore. Mock his throwing motion. Strike a pose. Say what you want, but you can't deny that we are witnessing something truly amazing.

Everybody had the built-in excuses when Tebow and the Broncos knocked off the Raiders and the Dolphins. Beating the Jets in primetime now lends credibility to what Tebow is doing.

I have no interest in engaging in discussions on whether this can last in the NFL or when defenses are going to catch up. None of that matters. How many times can you watch Tebow play like the NFL's version of S.D. Jones for 58 minutes and rally his team before you finally start believing?

I'll say it now, the Broncos are making the playoffs. I'll even go one better -- the Broncos and Raiders make the playoffs and the Patriots will be the only team from the AFC East to make it.

  • Bucky Brooks NFL.com
  • The Broncos will not make the playoffs

As much as I love the Broncos' resurgence under Tim Tebow, I don't believe Denver will reach the postseason. The Broncos simply lack the explosiveness and consistency in the passing game to score enough points to make a serious run at a berth. Although the combination of a strong running game and vastly improving defense has allowed them to keep games within their reach in recent weeks, they must find a way to generate more points through the air when teams start to stuff the run. They have been able to do it with smoke and mirrors for over a month, but good teams will find a way to take away the strongest part of their offense and force them to win with the pass.

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