Stop right there: I know you think this article is about comparing Tim Tebow and Johnny Manziel and tearing each one of them down like the majority of the news organizations. Actually, it’s not about that all. I’m actually comparing the Clubs they were drafted into and their leadership as well as pointing out what the media missed during their assaults on these two young men. These two QBs never stood a chance because just like the media built them up it tore them down and they continue the assaults.
Some little known facts about Tim Tebow is that he was home-schooled, his parents have strong Christian beliefs and there is a law in Florida known as the Tim Tebow Law that the legislature passed in 1996 that allowed home-schooled students to participate on the team of a local high school in the district they lived in. Guess what? Tim Tebow took advantage of this law and attended Trinity Christian Academy where he played tight end. In 2003 he moved into an apartment in St. Johns County which made him eligible to play for Allen D. Nease High School, which is where is got is quarterback start. It was at Nease in his junior year that he gained attention for his running and throwing abilities. In that same year he sustained an injury to his right leg that they thought was a bad cramp. He continued to play in the game and rushed for a 29-yard touchdown. Well, after the game it was determined that he had a broken fibula. Who Dat, says a running QB can’t play with injuries, Who Dat?
He went on to play for the University of Florida where he won the Heisman Trophy as a sophomore in 2007 and lead the Gators to the 2008 BCS championship. Tebow was selected in the first round in the 2010 NFL Draft by the “horrific” Denver Broncos where he was doomed from the get go. The Broncos had just hired Josh McDaniels as the head coach after firing Mike Shanahan when Tebow was drafted. Who the hell is Josh McDaniels and what had he done? Nothing really, he was a graduate assistant under Nick Saban at Michigan, who was a friend of his fathers’ and after that he was with the “cheating” Patriots. He took a page from Bill Belichick’s playbook when he was hired by the Broncos and ended up being caught up in a scandal because the Denver Post reported that the team’s director of video operations videotaped a San Francisco walkthrough practice during the teams’ game in England. This was aptly dubbed “Spygate II.”
Coaches like Jon Gruden and Tony Dungy believed that Tebow could be successful in the NFL but NFL analyst Mel Kiper believed Tebow did not have the intangibles to play quarterback in the NFL. My, my, my, Mel Kiper spewed his venom and the young man’s career was sunk before it got started.
I can’t help but wonder if it was Tebow’s strong faith and how he chose to live his life that caused some of the backlash. After all, some people do have a problem with people who put their faith on display and don’t shy away from their beliefs for the camera.
Johnny “Football” Manziel
First of all, he was born into wealth. His family became wealthy through the Texas petroleum industry so he’s not hurting for money. The nickname “Johnny Football” is a registered trademark. In high school he started off playing wide receiver but started the fourth game in his sophomore year as the quarterback and never looked back. During his high school years Manziel was compared to quarterbacks like Brett Favre, Michael Vick and Drew Brees. From high school he chose to attend Texas A&M University where he shattered a number of QB records. For instance, he broke Archie Manning’s 43 year old total offense record. Manziel produced 557 yards of total offense, breaking Manning’s record of 540, impressive. Additionally, he broke the single season record for offensive production in the SEC with 4600 yards, surpassing Cam Newton and Tim Tebow. Manziel announced that he would forego his junior season and enter the draft.
Johnny has always been an arrogant player and there is nothing wrong with that because it’s his arrogance that made him a successful QB. However, some coaches and sports analysts don’t handle that very well. There were various scouting opinions which ranged from he was “undraftable” to “rare competitor” and it is my belief that the negative statements caused his stock to drop. Former NFL head coach Barry Switzer took it to a personal level, criticizing Manziel, saying: “I don’t like his antics. I think he’s an arrogant little prick. I’ve said that and I’ll say it again.” Shaking my head, this is a grown man in his 70s. His comments were childish and unprofessional? These kind of statements impacted where Johnny ultimately ended up, which was with the hapless, poorly managed Cleveland Browns. If the comments had been more focused on Johnny forgoing his education and playing longer in college to gain more experience at the QB position that would have more beneficial and professional. I am not a proponent of these young kids entering the draft early without a diploma in their hands because there are too many uncertain factors waiting to befall them.
It is my understanding that on draft day, 21 teams, including the Cleveland Browns, passed on him. While Manziel was waiting to get drafted, he texted the Browns quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains that he wants to “wreck the league” in Cleveland. Loggains forwarded the text to head to coach Mike Pettine, who made the decision to trade up to draft Manziel. The Browns drafted him as the 22nd overall pick and the stage was set for disaster. The fact that Johnny thought that he could “wreck the league” in Cleveland showed his level of maturity and spoke volumes about the management of the Cleveland Browns. It was the text of a 22 year old that has never played on the professional level that caught your attention and made you draft him, really?
The Browns organization has always been in disarray. They did not need a QB because they already had a good QB in Brian Hoyer but as usual that organization does not know how to support a QB and continue to fall victim to the media. The Browns just keep playing musical chairs with QBs and destroying careers along the way. The Texans on the other hand did need a QB but chose to pass on Johnny and take Jadeveon Clowney, who they didn’t need. They already had J.J. Watt and a good DL but as the QB world turns the Texans traded for Brian Hoyer of the Browns in the off season, I cry foul!!!
Can Tebow and Manziel Play in the NFL?:
Of course they can. The problem with most of the NFL Teams is they continue to hire the same coaches, who are stuck in time and have not caught up with the new more athletic college QBs. They have not been able to create successful strategies that incorporate the athleticism of these young men. Instead, they force them to play in the pocket under the guise of not getting hurt and becoming a “more complete” QB. That is such a joke and is an out and out lie. Getting hurt is part of the game and has nothing to do with staying in the pocket. If your OL is weak, your QB is going to get sacked and more likely than not hurt because he’s not being protected.
So-called sports analysts like Mel Kiper who have never played the game and will argue; neither have and I and true that but the difference is I believe is progress and they believe in the status quo, (i.e. “the pocket passer”) and find pleasure in destroying the new more athletic QB. My recommendation for these stuck in time sports analysts, except that the game is changing and get with the program or get left behind.
Teams shore up your OL and coaches develop strategic plays that compliment the athleticism of your QB. If you do that it’s very possible that you will have a winning team. Coach Harbaugh and Coach Carroll have proven that it can be done.