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Sizing up Tebow’s audition in Denver

Tim Tebow

We’re checking in with each team as they hit their bye week to look at the state of their season.  The Broncos are up next.

We’ve already handled the Chargers, Cowboys, Redskins, Ravens, Dolphins, and Browns.

Defense matters

For all the hand-wringing about Kyle Orton, the 1-4 Broncos are 19th in points-per-game. That’s exactly what they were a year ago. The defense is the bigger problem.  They are 30th in points allowed. They were 32nd last year.

A healthy Elvis Dumervil and Champ Bailey will help this group immeasurably, but it’s a terrible-looking front against the run. The defensive tackle group is as bad as there is in football.

And a Tebow shall lead them

Orton’s demotion was more about Orton than it was about Tim Tebow.  Orton was making too many mistakes.

If Tebow’s one half of play is any indication, Denver’s offense is in for a bumpy but interesting ride. The Tebow 2.0 era started with three straight three-and-outs, which included some McNabb-like ground ball throws. Tebow’s decision making was slow and he came off his first read to run around too quickly.

He may be a competitor, but can he throw the ball and make decisions at the NFL level?

Tebow is a huge weapon in the running game and when he’s freelancing. He led two touchdown drives on short fields against San Diego. The two big factors: A perfect screen play call, and Tebow’s ability to run. They will be a different type of offense to prepare for.

Orton was forced to move and avoid the pass rush too much. That’s not his strength. Tebow is a better fit to extend plays.

A test for coaching staff

The team needs to change how they run their offense with Tebow. It’s going to be a run-heavy approach leaning on Willis McGahee and Knowshon Moreno.  McGahee has quietly enjoyed some big weeks. Moreno has been hurt and looks like a third-down back.

The staff can’t just expect to run Tebow out there using the same plays they called for Orton.  They need to get creative.

Returning receivers

Last year’s first-round pick Demaryius Thomas and injured starter Eddie Royal will both return to the field. This will give Tebow more weapons to play with. We saw too much of Matthew Willis and Daniel Fells on Sunday.

Made right choice with Von Miller

Despite his Week 5 benching, it’s clear the Broncos hit on a star with No. 2 overall pick Von Miller. He has five sacks and tons of QB pressures.  Opponents are starting to target Miller in coverage and in the run game, but the rookie is already a premier pass rusher.  He’ll learn.

Where is Foxball?

The quarterback controversy has distracted from the fact John Fox has yet to significantly improve the Broncos defense. The tackling is especially poor. Showing progress on defense before the end of the year is a must.

Tebow’s audition

Tim Tebow has 11 weeks to prove he’s Denver’s quarterback of the future. It’s an uphill battle because Fox and John Elway haven’t embraced him as that kind of player. We suspect Brady Quinn would get a shot late in the year if Tebow really struggled.

The Broncos get the Chiefs twice, the Vikings, and the Dolphins in the second half.  If Denver can’t win most of those games, they will be staring at a 3-13 or 4-12 type of year.  The rest of the schedule is difficult.

Tebow needs to help the Broncos win games now so that Elway isn’t in position to draft his replacement in April.

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59 Responses to “Sizing up Tebow’s audition in Denver”
  1. meegs34 says: Oct 12, 2011 11:16 AM

    Say goodbye to Brandon Lloyd as a viable fantasy option.

  2. rdrs68 says: Oct 12, 2011 11:20 AM

    The sooner this experiment is over the better-TBlow should be a fullback or TE if he wants to play in the NFL.

  3. huejackson says: Oct 12, 2011 11:22 AM

    Tebow should be a slot WR..
    What is wrong with the Broncos? It’s like they don’t want to win.. Tebow will play good against the Dolphins but it’s the Dolphins.. What is he going to do against that Raiders front 4?
    Tebow would thrive in Hue Jacskons offense.. He would be out there catching balls and running reverses.. Why don’t the Broncos start Quinn first and then if he starts to suck by halftime put Tebow in..
    I do feel bad for Kyle Orton.. I think he is a decent QB and is alot better than Tebow..
    I want the Bronocos to get better that way when the play the Raiders it will be a good game..Now its just a massacre

  4. seneca1ss says: Oct 12, 2011 11:27 AM

    “Passion of the Tebow” will get hurt

  5. yzguy431 says: Oct 12, 2011 11:29 AM

    why doesn’t 7 suit up?

  6. ahs2 says: Oct 12, 2011 11:29 AM

    I love Fox’s ringing endorsement, “Whether this works or not, time will tell”. I’ve never seen a fan base pressure a team into something so stupid…

    The QB future of the Broncos is not on the team right now!!!

  7. 7pints says: Oct 12, 2011 11:34 AM

    I love all these “intelligent” posters that slam Tebow before he has even had a chance to show what he can do. Must be the same idiots who thought Barack Obama is a great president after his first month in office.

  8. The Phantom Stranger says: Oct 12, 2011 11:35 AM

    Tebow performs every time he’s had a chance. Maybe he doesn’t look like John Elway as a passer, but who cares if the team performs better with him? Kyle Orton is nothing special and won’t be on the team next year. I don’t see any downside to starting Tebow the rest of the year. If he’s terrible, you draft Luck. If he’s great, what’s the problem?

  9. tundey says: Oct 12, 2011 11:38 AM

    When ESPN wrote that article about a white Mike Vick, why didn’t they just use Tebow’s picture?

  10. broncfanor says: Oct 12, 2011 11:40 AM

    Some of you just crack me up.

    You do realize that while the NFL isn’t college you don’t put up the passing stats Tebow put up without being able to throw the ball right?

    As for the Raiders front four, who cares, it’s the Raiders?

    He’ll avoid the rush unlike Orton and either run the ball or throw it.

    Maybe some of you forgot about his run last year.

  11. titsburgfeelers says: Oct 12, 2011 11:40 AM

    Raidershahahahaha

  12. nflofficeadmin says: Oct 12, 2011 11:45 AM

    Broncos fans gather for group ejaculations around the city.

  13. souldogdave says: Oct 12, 2011 11:46 AM

    They face the Vikings, Dolphins, and Chiefs twice. Did you forget the Raiders in Oakland in Nov.? Muahahahaha!

  14. MichaelEdits says: Oct 12, 2011 11:47 AM

    Attention Denver fans. I’d better be reading about the Brady Quinn billboards soon.

  15. theblondbomber says: Oct 12, 2011 11:48 AM

    What I want to know is how does Tebow manage to have such huge biceps, yet still throw like a girl?

    ESPN needs to do one of those Sports Science things on that.

  16. djteknision1200 says: Oct 12, 2011 11:56 AM

    I’m just glad all the questions about Tebow will be answered in the next coming weeks.

  17. peopletrains says: Oct 12, 2011 11:57 AM

    Tebow will have his moments but won’t be able to get this team over the hump. Donkeys should ready the Landry Jones/Matt Barkley promos.

  18. briang123 says: Oct 12, 2011 11:58 AM

    I am concerned that because of Tebow, players from both teams will start gathering after games to pray in a circle and some players might knell and bow to God after scoring a TD. We can’t have Tebow starting those kinds of things in the NFL.

  19. capslockkey says: Oct 12, 2011 12:06 PM

    I look forward to the gazillion Tebow updates by PFT and every other media outlet over the next three months……

    and people wonder why this guy has haters. I don’t hate him, I’m just sick and tired and hearing about him.

  20. blitzburgh43 says: Oct 12, 2011 12:08 PM

    I thought he was 3rd on the depth chart and there were rumors about trading him less that a few weeks ago.

    Alrighty then. Good luck with that one.

  21. lance19 says: Oct 12, 2011 12:08 PM

    Can he throw the ball and make decisions at the NFL level?

    __________________________________

    No. All the other teams (and most fans) knew that.
    The Broncos will soon.

  22. lunchbox92 says: Oct 12, 2011 12:09 PM

    meegs34,

    Great work making the same comment on every Tebow story.

    Now check Lloyd’s fantasy stats during the last three games last year, the ones Tebow started. His stats were just fine.

  23. lunchbox92 says: Oct 12, 2011 12:11 PM

    huejackson,

    Yeah, what’s wrong with them? It is like they don’t want to win. What are they thinking – replacing the quarterback making all kinds of mistakes who’s not winning?

    Great logic, there.

  24. zaggs says: Oct 12, 2011 12:18 PM

    Good god, what is it with the PFT stalking of Tebow? he is a second year QB on a crappy team. Yet 3 posts now about this latest turn? How many over the summer? Jeez, give it a rest.

  25. Wilie Beamon says: Oct 12, 2011 12:20 PM

    By the time veterans day rolls around you will hear extensive crying about how OC Mike Mccoy sucks .

  26. garem75 says: Oct 12, 2011 12:39 PM

    The real story here isn’t Tebow or not to Tebow….it is John Fox.

    As a Carolina Panther fan, I watched as he turned the team into the most basic and honestly boring team in the league. Granted for some reason it actually worked during a couple seasons(NFC championship game and a Super Bowl game appearance). But all in all he was just a mediocre coach and ended his tenure with Carolina having the #1 pick in the draft last year.

    John Fox is not the same “firey” coach he used to be. He never answers a question straight, he is bland, and above all else he has lost his defensive prowess. Denver will not be a consistently winning team under the leadership of this coach….it doesn’t matter who the QB is. John Fox is not a premier coach and his best years are behind him….and they weren’t really all that good to begin with.

  27. freedomispopular says: Oct 12, 2011 12:40 PM

    Donovan McNaab’s still got a job, so I’m pretty there’s a place for Tebow in this league.

  28. hatesycophants says: Oct 12, 2011 12:43 PM

    Again, what the hell is wrong with Broncos fans?

    Go Lions! Go Badgers! Go Tigers!

  29. blowtorch1964 says: Oct 12, 2011 12:48 PM

    At least now we’ll know. Not that it matters much to anyone but Denver fans, his parents, and maybe GOD.

    I usually root for an underdog: Seabiscuit, the horse with short legs who showed ‘em in the end, the movie star who early agents told ‘em not to quit their day job, the old guy who can still get ‘er done, the guy too short to play in the NFL, the Karate Kid, and all the other unorthodox geniuses who were misunderstood.

    Tebow is probably not that guy, but let’s see.

  30. gilgafresh says: Oct 12, 2011 12:55 PM

    Anybody that has actually watched these games knows that Denver’s defense is much improved. Their redzone D is downright stingy a lot of the time. The defense has kept the team in 4 out of 5 games despite the offense’s insistence that these games shouldn’t be so close.

    I hate removing a game for statistical purposes, but just how much the Denver D has improved is better demonstrated by not counting the Green Bay game.

    Without that game the Broncos D is 12th in points allowed and 17th in yards allowed… A HUGE improvement over last year’s 32nd/32nd (or 33rd/35th, or whatever it was… ugh).

    I’m sure ever team’s defensive stats improve without counting the damage Rodgers and Co. do to them, but with only 5 games played so far one game (this game) makes a BIG difference. Basically, the numbers don’t tell the whole story.

    The D still has a ways to go, but a good portion of the fanbase is pleased with the progression/improvement so far.

  31. 15gb2 says: Oct 12, 2011 1:00 PM

    Do you know why PFT has a post about Tim Tebow what seems like every other hour? Its because his stories generate more readers and comments then any other story or player in football.. its making PFT money!.. I also laugh at the fact the 90% of the post on his stories are from haters.. iv never seen so much hate for one guy.. the fact is, no1 know if he will suck, or if he will be a star.. its all based off OPINIONS.. so if u don’t like him.. quit adding fuel to the fire! GAME ON

  32. broncfolife says: Oct 12, 2011 1:06 PM

    Bench Fox.
    The guy hasn’t shown a bit of creativity with the play calls or design. Its like he’s real old.

  33. qdog112 says: Oct 12, 2011 1:06 PM

    Not since Sarah Palin has so much been said and written about someone who’s done so little. Only in America does 3 come after 1. What happened to Quinn, the #2?

  34. 15gb2 says: Oct 12, 2011 1:11 PM

    Also for those of you who think Brandon lloyd will be irrelevent in fantasy land..when Tebow started the last 3 games in 2010 Lloyd had 275 yards and 2 tds.. um id say he’s still a good fantasy option

  35. bwisnasky says: Oct 12, 2011 1:14 PM

    Again Tebowmaniacs, just answer the question… out of all the horrendous decisions that McDaniels made as coach of that team, what makes all of you so sure that for some reason he got this one decision right?

  36. drexelvol says: Oct 12, 2011 1:29 PM

    Timmy’s first game will be against a really bad Miami team. Of course, the Broncos will win, but only because the Fins are a horrid team.

    Everyone in Denver will rejoice at the second coming of Jesus then they will hit the wall when they play a decent team and Timmy gets throttled.

  37. 15gb2 says: Oct 12, 2011 1:33 PM

    (Bwisnasky) Because if Josh MCD knew anything.. he knew QBs.. he made Kyle neckbeard Orton look like Dan Marino..

  38. granadafan says: Oct 12, 2011 1:34 PM

    The NFL has entered a new era. The BT (Before Tebow) period was stuck in a copycat league with simple drop back passers with a few runners. The AT (After Tebow) period will be one where fans make team decisions and call on players who are in the wrong position.

  39. bronfieldmann says: Oct 12, 2011 1:37 PM

    @theblondebomber: simple physiology shows that Tebows overlarge biceps do not help him. In fact, they may hinder him. One does not use the biceps to throw. To draw the ball up, yes, but not to throw. Throwing is a complex interaction of the triceps, both deltoids, supraspintus, infraspintus pectoralis minor, pectoralis major, lastisiums dorsi and several muscles in the back including subscapularis and the also the forward part of the rotator cuff. In fact, after Elway tore his biceps in Mexico city, he regained his throwing motion with more velocity and less pain.

  40. brutus9448 says: Oct 12, 2011 1:38 PM

    Elway knows Tebow gives the broncos the best chance to win the andrew luck derby

  41. broncobillie says: Oct 12, 2011 1:57 PM

    “Again Tebowmaniacs, just answer the question… out of all the horrendous decisions that McDaniels made as coach of that team, what makes all of you so sure that for some reason he got this one decision right?”

    We’re not. It is what it is, and we’re just trying to figure out how best to go forward. He’s not good trade bait, so we’re stuck with him. So we have nothing to lose at this point by putting him to the test. If he fails, we have a good draft next year (and Von Miller shows this front office group can draft well). If he succeeds, we’re ahead. Either way, we’ll know by season’s end what we have in Tebow.

    There’s nothing to gain by decrying all the lousy moves JMD made (I’m still upset by him getting rid of Peyton Hillis) but we’re best served by looking forward, not backward.

    Whether Tebow works out or not, this we know: the ride will be an interesting one!

  42. cuda1234 says: Oct 12, 2011 2:02 PM

    Just remember that Tebow’s all about Tebow. The wr’s will have to block for Tebow. The rb’s will have to block for Tebow and can kiss their performance bonuses good-bye. The lineman will have to block for twice as long on passing plays as he runs around lost waiting for something to happen. He will not share the ball or handoff at the goal line and will seek all the glory for himself. It should be a lot of fun for the other guys on the team.

  43. tinbender2000 says: Oct 12, 2011 2:02 PM

    broncfanor says: Oct 12, 2011 11:40 AM

    Some of you just crack me up.

    As for the Raiders front four, who cares, it’s the Raiders?
    —————————————————–
    59-14 That’s why you should care. HaHaHaHaHa

    Go Raiders!

  44. capslockkey says: Oct 12, 2011 2:15 PM

    “(and Von Miller shows this front office group can draft well)”

    No it doesn’t. An untrained monkey can take the best player available with the second overall pick. It’s the later rounds where you prove your worth as drafter.

  45. bwisnasky says: Oct 12, 2011 2:38 PM

    15gb2 says:
    Oct 12, 2011 1:33 PM
    (Bwisnasky) Because if Josh MCD knew anything.. he knew QBs.. he made Kyle neckbeard Orton look like Dan Marino..

    ——————————————-

    He’s also managed to make Sam Bradford look like Kyle Boller….

  46. pigskinswag says: Oct 12, 2011 2:40 PM

    The way Jon Gruden gushes over Tebow, he just might come in his pants if he’s successful.

  47. 2ruefan says: Oct 12, 2011 2:49 PM

    Hey “bronfieldmann” – LOL..!
    You’re trying sooo hard to sound like such an expert on “simply physiology”

    What pray tell are the “lastisiums” (sic) dorsi?

    Is that like when someone has elastic back muscles or something?

    Too funny…

    I think you meant latissimus genius….

  48. 2ruefan says: Oct 12, 2011 2:49 PM

    Hey “bronfieldmann” – LOL..!
    You’re trying sooo hard to sound like such an expert on “simple physiology”

    What pray tell are the “lastisiums” (sic) dorsi?

    Is that like when someone has elastic back muscles or something?

    Too funny…

    I think you meant latissimus genius….

  49. 15gb2 says: Oct 12, 2011 3:10 PM

    Bwinasky.. haha true.. guess we will just have to wait and see.. my money is on number 15

  50. 15gb2 says: Oct 12, 2011 3:13 PM

    Bwinasky.. haha true.. guess we will just have to wait and see.. my money is on number 15 tho

  51. tatatoothy says: Oct 12, 2011 3:26 PM

    Did anybody really think Brady Quinn, who sucked Cleveland and frankly sucked in the preseason, was going to ever see the football field for this team? Quinn is awful. Has always been, and always will be.

    Tebow has the chance to be a legitimate star in this league. Give him a chance. Are his mechanics off? Maybe they’re not prototypical, but does anybody remember Bernie Kosar? The guy was a good to better than good QB for many years in this league and the dude practically threw the ball underhanded!

    Worst case scenario is Tebow shows he’s not a legit QB at this level. Best case scenario is the Broncos have a star that defenses struggle to gameplan for week after week who knows only one thing – Wins!

  52. lunchbox92 says: Oct 12, 2011 3:28 PM

    capslockkey,

    There was no consensus that Von Miller was the best available at number 2. Most thought they would take Dareus and a lot of experts had either Dareus or Peterson listed as the best available.

  53. broncsfan72 says: Oct 12, 2011 3:31 PM

    hey huejackson the raiders front four is soft. Tebow will gash them for a 40 yard run like he did last year. I loved that nice lil stiff arm he did on one of the raiders defensive backs. hahaha. Raiders suck!!!!

  54. alldayvikings says: Oct 12, 2011 3:50 PM

    which included some McNabb-like ground ball throws.

    Oh McNabb you suck!!

  55. rufustfireflyjr says: Oct 12, 2011 3:56 PM

    broncfanor says:
    Oct 12, 2011 11:40 AM
    “Some of you just crack me up.

    You do realize that while the NFL isn’t college you don’t put up the passing stats Tebow put up without being able to throw the ball right?”

    Q. What do Timmy Chang, Graham Harrell, Ty Detmer, Colt Brennan, Dan LeFevour, and Tim Rattay have in common?

    A. They are all among the ten most statistically prolific passers in NCAA history. And they all failed miserably in the NFL. I’m not necessarily saying that Tebow will be among them, but just because you can fling it in college doesn’t mean that you can do it in the pros.

  56. gators56 says: Oct 12, 2011 4:44 PM

    Elway may have been a good NFL QB, but his choice of Orton over Tebow shows he lacks Front Office skills.

  57. sterilizecromartie says: Oct 12, 2011 5:33 PM

    So the Kyle-Orton led offense was 19th in PPG last year and the Kyle-Orton led offense is 19th in PPG this year. How does it not call for hand-wringing when the offense shows absolutely no improvement?

  58. lunchbox92 says: Oct 12, 2011 6:15 PM

    bwisnasky wrote:

    “Again Tebowmaniacs, just answer the question… out of all the horrendous decisions that McDaniels made as coach of that team, what makes all of you so sure that for some reason he got this one decision right?”

    Well, McDaniels brought in all three quarterbacks on the active roster, so your point is kind of moot.

    However, McDaniels played Orton over Tebow – so I suppose this is the counter to McDaniels’ quarterback decision.

  59. Wilie Beamon says: Oct 13, 2011 12:31 AM

    So the Kyle-Orton led offense was 19th in PPG last year and the Kyle-Orton led offense is 19th in PPG this year. How does it not call for hand-wringing when the offense shows absolutely no improvement?

    The Broncos have played 4 of the top 11 defenses in the league in there first 5 games and they were 3 tds outside the top ten .

    In the end it wouldve started to balance out

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