Saturday, August 20, 2011

Brady Quinn Jump-Starting NFL Career In Denver; Tim Tebow Doesn't Have Chance To Be Backup

All of that hushed talk this past week about Tim Tebow being pushed to 3rd string quarterback by Brady Quinn appears to now be true.  Watching both quarterbacks in tonight's pre-season game between the Broncos and the Bills showed a massive difference between the two players both in their play and in what they're given to do by the coaching staff.

Coach John Fox Shakes Brady Quinn's Hand Before The Game
Photo: John Leyba/Denver Post
Quinn went 10-16 for 135 yards with one touchdown and one interception.  In four drives, he directed a drive for a touchdown, a field goal, a three-and-out, and a long drive that ended in an interception on the goal line just before halftime.  The pass appeared to be a quick slant on a three-step drop, and the offensive line didn't appear to adequately block the defensive line. A Bills defensive end was able to tip the ball at the line of scrimmage, resulting in an interception.

Tebow got into the game in the fourth quarter, and had a terrible first drive.  He attempted a long pass that honestly should have been intercepted (thrown to the inside of the receiver equal to where the defensive back was running), and then received a delay of game penalty.  Finally, on his third play he was sacked and Denver was forced to punt.  He came in for one more drive, but was pulled to allow the fourth-string quarterback, Adam Weber, to come in to get practice handing off to end the game.

If you look closely, it does appear that the Broncos are trying to get Quinn more game-time in pre-season than Tebow.  Last week, Tebow backed up Orton, but it was Quinn who got the entire second half to work with the 2nd/3rd team offense.  This week, Quinn was the backup, but he also got most of the time again, playing half of the second quarter, and the entire third quarter.  Tebow barely played half of the fourth quarter.

Living in Denver allows me to pay close attention to the local sports coverage, and this afternoon in pre-game, radio and tv analysts alike both talked about how much Quinn had improved versus how much Tebow had not.  The media in Denver is certainly not under Tim Tebow's spell, although the fans still love him.  However, if Quinn continues to play well, he will get that same kind of affection.

Tim Tebow
Photo: John Leyba/Denver Post
I actually think Tebow would be well-served to sit on the sidelines for the entire year as the third-string quarterback and simply learn a new system.  Look at Quinn's case: he had some chances to start earlier in his career, but injury and playing for a terrible team derailed his career.  However, with hard work this off-season and time to mature, he appears to be on his way to jump-starting his NFL career.  Tebow needs to take notes.

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