Chicago Sun-Times

Tebow Experiment Begins

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If Jerry Angelo hadn't traded for Jay Cutler last offseason he would be trying to solve the same complex puzzle so many others have been trying to solve.
He would be trying to solve the riddle that is Tim Tebow.

The Tebow Experiment began earlier this week during Senior Bowl practices and continues later today during the game itself, and whether or not he can approach the success in the pros that he had in college was the topic of the week in Mobile.
Don't think all the scouts and coaches evaluating his every move have all the answers, either. If that were the case Joe Montana wouldn't have lasted until the third round and Tom Brady the sixth. If the so-called experts could accurately predict which quarterback would be successful teams wouldn't have flushed away first-round picks on Heath Shuler, Ryan Leaf, Cade McNown, Matt Leinart and JaMarcus Russell.
So far, nobody has learned anything they didn't already know. Tebow, who played in a shotgun offense at Florida, had trouble handling direct snaps, which was to be expected. He is neither as accurate as he needs to be nor as polished dropping back in the pocket as most NFL scouts would like him to be, which should also come as no surprise given the offense he ran in college.
"There's no question about his ability to work hard and his football intelligence is fabulous," said former Bears quarterback and longtime NFL assistant Zeke Bratkowski, who has been working with Tebow this winter. "I'm sure there are great offensive minds out there that would love to have him because he's got a lot of intangibles that other quarterbacks don't have."
That's the one word that is already been overused when describing Tebow: Intangibles. How they will transition to the NFL is what is at the center of a great debate. The one thing you don't want to do, according to one scout, is get so wrapped up what he doesn't do well that you forget what he has done as well as anyone in college football history --- win.
He doesn't have Cutler's arm, although he can throw the ball as hard --- if not as accurately --- as Drew Brees. The ball doesn't always come off his hand the way it should, which leads to wobbly passes reminiscent of Jim McMahon. He's not a between-the-numbers passer. His balls are often a shade low, high or off to one side.
He has what one scout described as an "elongated" throwing motion. His release needs to be quicker and his release point higher.
But what everybody most wants to know is the one thing you can't measure. Is he football smart? Based on his college career the answer screams yes. Will the game slow down for him in the pros like it did in college? That's the question that it will take a multi-million dollar contract to answer.
"He'll make it," said former Redskins coach Jim Zorn. "He's got grit. He'll develop different skills because of the way he's going to be coached at this level. It's not better it's just different. He really cares. You love guys like that because they give themselves a chance to get better. He'll fit in wherever he goes but he looks to me like he wants to be coached."
To get the most out of Tebow a coach will have to be inventive and play to his strengths, especially early in his career. It makes the most sense to create a package of plays for him that he can run in specialty situations that are more like the spread offense he ran in college. That way he can have some success right away while developing the skills that will make him successful long term.
"He has to make quicker decisions," said former NFL quarterback Jay Schroeder, who has been watching Tebow this week. "The game is going to be a little faster than he anticipates but every kid out here is in that same boat. But he brings a dynamic with the way he can run the ball. He can create a lot of mismatches."
He would've been an ideal Bear if only because nowhere else would a quarterback who can also serve as a short-yardage back be more appreciated. It makes no sense for the draft-pick depleted Bears to select him now that they have Cutler, however, but Tebow would be a good fit for a team that can afford to be patient.
Is he worth a first-round pick? No way. As a third-rounder with the right coaching staff, you might not want to bet against him.

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9 Comments

Tim Tebow was definitely a winner in college, there's no doubting that. Tebow's biggest problem heading into the next level is going to be his mechanics, especially his prolonged throwing motion. To me, thats his biggest knock. But, that doesn't mean he won't make it at the next level, remember, a guy named Bernie Kosar also had the same problem with his throwing motion. And Kosar didn't turn out so bad. Tebow's problem taking snaps under center can be fixed with coaching. Bottom line, the guy is without a doubt a project, but that doesn't mean he won't pan out.

Chicago needs to be looking at offensive linemen anyways, especially guards. GO BEARS!!

This guy is gonna be a really good tight end one day.

Philip Rivers is another qb who a lot of scouts were concerned with over his throwing motion. However, the question for Kosar and Rivers was about the angle they throw the ball at, not the long motion like Tebow has and his lack of accuracy. It will be interesting to see who drafts Tebow, when he is drafted, and for what position. Jacksonville is under a lot of pressure to draft him, but I think it might be a huge mistake. The back up quarterback is the most popular player on some teams, but it would be ridiculus in Florida. Even if Garrard or whoever else they have plays at a pro bowl level, one mistake and the fans will be demanding Tebow.

Sorry Kevin but his mechanics are not his biggest problem. His arm is. He is highly innaccurate and can't make all the throws which he proved at the Senior Bowl. He is a nice kid though. Also if he tries running against nfl linebackers they will light him up and end his career quickly.

Tebow? Tebow who? Is that the Tebow that might have a restricted income do to the new bargaining agreement that the NFL will `agree' to?
There is a article in another pub. about Jimy Mac on Cutler, he said `either you have the instinctys or you dont' not sure if he was endorsing Cutler or not sounded not, but the point is. it has nothing to do with how you throw it, it has to do with when you throw it

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100131/SPORTS03/1310303

nice article about a family (son) that turned the Colts around, actually I feel Pollian hiring was best but still, Jim Irsay knows and the mccaskeys dont pure and simple. They need to turn it over to a NFL knowlegable person and stay away and just collect some money.

oh and yes, I am saying the `agreement' is already agreed to, think they havent already been talking behind the `media'? They know exactly what the sticking points are and already have it typed up. figure. They arent stupid.

All the teams will knock players they want. Normalcy
Please do an article on the available GUARDS. or maybe tackles Jerry can draft to replace Omiyale }[


go guards!

Creighton, dude, I also don't see Tebow panning out, all I'm saying is you just never know with some of these guys. Anyways, Central Michigan's Dan LeFevour was the best QB in that game. I think this kid could be a steal for somebody. The kids got the arm and mobility, and I like his touch on his passes. That 32 yard td pass was right in the basket. Oklahoma state's Zac Robinson was impressive also, but I'd take LeFevour over him. Oh well, we don't need a QB, its kinda cool to be a Bear fan and be able to say that isn't it?

Randy, you hit the nail on the head, Chicago needs a guard. I like Mike Johnson 6-6 305lbs of Alabama, he started most of the game at left guard for the south team in the senior bowl. Johnson looked solid overall during the game, but I think it was North Carolina defensive tackle Marvin Austin who beat Johnson on a play. Austin drove Johnson back and spun around him for a QB pressure. That was about the only time I noticed Johnson got beat. Johnson was a four year starter at Alabama. Another one I liked was Jon Asamoah of Illinois 6-5 315lbs. He hurt his soulder earlier in the week and didn't play. But was a pretty good guard in the big ten, especially as a run blocker. Another option for Angelo is Mississippi guard John Jerry 6-5 330lbs. He had some nice blocks during the game and seems to be strong at the point of attack, he had a couple nice run blocks I noticed. Angelo needs to be checking these guys out.

Sean/Neil, Randy is right, give us some draft info on the Bears. Who are they looking at, what position? Who were the Bears checking out this week? Over the last couple off-seasons this site was the place to come for Bear draft info thanks to Brad Biggs, he was very good at keeping us caught up on Chicago draft wise, c'mon, keep the tradition alive, give us something. GO BEARS!!

i wonder why tebow is even worth consideration? really why?

he doesn't have an nfl arm and that's easy to see.
you look at clausen or bradford throw the ball it looks crisp like and nfl throw. Even if tebow is coached up he won't have the arm strength to make all the throws. some people are blessed with that and some aren't.

and anybody who thinks he's going to be able to run in the nfl is crazy. he isn't a make you miss runner, rather he's like to bull over people and that's fine when you are playing charleston southern but if he tries that in the nfl he'll be finished.

i'm just sick of the tebow hype. yeah he's a great guy and yeah he won a lot of games but who cares. i've never seen so much hype over a future back up qb (at best a back up).

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on January 30, 2010 11:52 AM.

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