If you look solely at his career NFL numbers, it’s certainly fair to critique Tim Tebow the quarterback and say that his career 47.9 completion percentage leaves much to be desired.
Of course, you’d be ignoring one of the more electric playoff runs in recent memory when Tebow took a lackluster Denver Broncos team to the postseason in 2011, but that’s neither here nor there.
John Elway, NFL legend and current Denver Broncos general manager and president of football operations, presided over the team during Tebow’s second and final year there.
That lone season together, according to the book, was apparently fraught with tension.
Some of the more salacious claims that Cole included in his book accuse Tebow of sabotaging his relationship with the Broncos due to greed and hubris.
One such instance involved the team frowning upon Tebow’s “cottage industry” of speaking appearances, which included a $50,000 fee for appearing and speaking at churches, according to the book.
In fact, the book alleges that Tebow’s brother once told Elway’s wife, Janet, that it would cost $50,000 for Tebow to speak at a charity event.
According to the book, Janet Elway declined the offer, but not before telling Tebow’s brother that her husband never charged an appearance fee for a charity event.
Other off-the-field incidents supposedly included Broncos staff feeling as if Tebow was “upstaging” then-Broncos quarterback and former starter Kyle Orton during the 2011 season.
Given that the Broncos sputtered to a 1-4 start that season with Orton at the helm, perhaps Tebow did upstage Orton by virtue of going 7-4 the rest of the way and leading Denver to a playoff berth.
It’s probably worth noting that Orton completed a paltry 58.7 percent of his passes that year, to go along with eight touchdowns and seven interceptions.
According to the Daily Mail, the book also notes it probably didn’t help that Broncos staff felt Tebow made himself available to every interview possible.
All of the supposed aforementioned issues reportedly led one Broncos employee to describe Tebow as “the most self-centered humble guy I’ve ever met.”
Compounding those reported off-the-field issues was his on-field play.
As mentioned above, Tebow was not exactly lighting the world on fire with his quarterback play, even though he was accumulating numbers in the most important stat — wins.
Despite those wins, Cole writes that one teammate said Tebow “has no idea what’s going on out there. If the first read doesn’t work, he’s just making it up.”
Broncos coaches felt that Tebow’s quarterbacking was “simply awful, sometimes comically so,” the book says.
For what it’s worth, there’s not much comically awful about this play:
To be clear, this is an unauthorized biography about John Elway. Without casting aspersions on Cole, there’s no way to know the veracity of these claims unless Tebow or the Broncos staffers confirm it. And that seems unlikely.
If this is all true, there will undoubtedly be those who construe this as a damning indictment of Tebow the person and football player. And that’s certainly one interpretation.
But another interpretation could just as easily be that Tebow actually did get robbed of a fair shot in the NFL.
After all, it’s virtually impossible for even the most talented of athletes to succeed when everyone, from teammates and coaches to top executives and their wives, appear to be actively rooting against you.
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