Thursday, December 20, 2012
No Particular Place, Tebow
And, in all fairness, Tim Tebow led an NFL team to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in the postseason. The list of quarterbacks who've done that is actually pretty impressive: Tommy Thompson (1947 Eagles), Bob Griese (1972 Dolphins -- and his son Brian never did it for the Broncos), Ken Stabler (1973 & '76 Raiders), Craig Morton (1977 Broncos), Dan Fouts (1982 Chargers), Jim Plunkett (1983 Raiders), Dan Marino (1984 Dolphins), John Elway (1989 & '97 Broncos), Jim Kelly (1992 Bills), Joe Montana (1993 Chiefs), Stan Humphries (1994 Chargers), Troy Aikman (1995 Cowboys), Drew Bledsoe (1996 Patriots), Tom Brady (2001 & '04 Patriots), Steve McNair (2002 Titans), David Garrard (2007 Jaguars), Aaron Rodgers (2010 Packers) and Tim Tebow (2011 Broncos).
But now, neither Sanchez (who is just 26 years old) nor Tebow (a year younger) seems to be good enough to be the starting quarterback for the New York Jets.
And Greg McElroy is? Who the hell is Greg McElroy?
He's a 24-year-old righthander, born in Los Angeles, who played high school football in the Dallas area while his father, a former quarterback at the University of Hawaii, worked in the front office for the Cowboys. On the team at Carroll Senior High School in Southlake, he was stuck behind Chase Daniel until his senior year. (Daniel went on to star at the University of Missouri, and is now Drew Brees' backup on the New Orleans Saints.) But in that senior year, McElroy led them to a 16-0 season and a State Championship, and was named the State's Player of the Year.
He went to the University of Alabama, and here's what he did in the 2009 season: Knocked off Virginia Tech, then ranked Number 5 in the nation, with a 2nd-half comeback; beat Number 22 South Carolina; beat Ole Miss in front of the biggest crowd ever to attend a sporting event in the State of Mississippi; dethroned Number 1 Florida with a performance that earned him the game's MVP, despite sustaining two cracked ribs; and beat Texas to win the National Championship. His senior year wasn't quite as good, as Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton led Auburn past Alabama and knocked the Crimson Tide out of contention for another SEC title. But he was named a National Football Foundation scholar-athlete, so he wasn't one of these guys who went to a big school just to play football.
In other words, while he was not as accomplished at the college level as Tebow, he was more accomplished at that level than Sanchez.
The Jets drafted him in the 7th round in 2011. In his first year, he was available for the entire season, and took a grand total of zero snaps. In his NFL career to date, he has made 1 appearance, throwing 5 passes -- 1 of which was a touchdown to Jeff Cumberland for the Jets' only score in a 7-6 "win" over the suddenly-pathetic Arizona Cardinals on December 2.
Which certainly suggests that McElroy deserves as much of a chance as the Jets have given Sanchez -- and more of one than they've given Tebow.
So the era of "The Sanchize" appears to be over. And the Tebow Experiment hasn't even been tried. And there's a rumor going around that, A, the Jets are shopping Sanchez; and, 2, Tebow has asked to be traded. (In that other kind of football, this would be called "putting in a transfer request.")
The Jets are 6-8. No chance at the Playoffs. My thoughts on Rex Ryan are well known: His tenure as coach has been a failure, not so much because of what he's done (2 AFC Championship Games are more than any other Jet coach has been able to do), but because of what he said he would do, and hasn't.
So Sanchez may go, Tebow probably will go, and Ryan should go.
But, until Ryan does go, Tebow remains the bigger story. Not since George W. Bush went on vacation in August 2001, ignoring a certain memo about Osama bin Laden, has a man generated as much publicity for doing nothing as has Tim Tebow.
Only, in Tebow's case, it isn't really his fault. Whether he deserves to be a starting quarterback in the NFL is a discussion worth having -- and, from what I've seen, he seems to be a decent enough person, but not a quarterback good enough to start at the NFL level.
But, support him or not, I think we can all agree that he didn't deserve what's happened to him with the J, E, T, S, Jets, Jets, Jets.
To the tune of "No Particular Place to Go" by Chuck Berry (which sounds a lot like one of Chuck's earlier hits, "School Day"):
Riding along to the Mile High.
He can be their post-John Elway guy.
He stole the money, Brian Griese.
As good as his dad, he'd never be.
Cruisin' to Denver, Colorado.
To that particular place, Tebow.
Riding along and he is for real.
He beat those Pittsburgh men of Steel.
His passing yards were 316.
Like the Scripture said, know what I mean?
But then he slaughtered in Foxboro.
So it's no particular place, Tebow.
No particular place, Tebow.
So off to New York, the kid did go.
The streets of the City are paved with gold.
And the Sanchez losses are getting old.
Can you imagine the way he felt?
Stuck to the bench like he's in seatbelt!
Sitting along in the Meadowlands!
Sanchez can't the ball in hands!
But Timmy won't be Rex's boy!
Passed over for who? Greg McElroy?
A bunch of Jet minds that are working slow!
It's no particular place, Tebow!