Tebow's First Half Against Detroit

I've mentioned this a couple of times in various comment threads and am mostly just getting mocked, so I figured I would put my notes here.

I re-watched the first half of the Detroit game and honestly thought that Tebow showed more good than bad in the first half.

Of course, it's important to note that I am isolating Tebow's play from matters such as - play calling, wide receiver play, special teams play, and defensive play.  

Below the jumps are my raw notes.  There are some implied questions - opinions welcome, particularly on a couple of the plays I wasn't sure how to interpret.


1st drive:


  • good drive overall.  A good run, and two accurate passes by Tebow.  Decker should have dragged feet, which was a blitz.
  • last attempt, Detroit had snuffed out the screen, and as a result, the delay meant Beadles was too far downfield for another pass attempt.
  • what does this mean? either tebow needs another quick outlet before linemen get downfield, or the play is dead and tebow needs to throw it away.  I guess he did throw it away actually, just at Moreno's feet.
  • either way it's a field goal attempt. More a good defensive play (or a bad play call) than Tebow's fault


(defense, give up a td)

2nd drive:

  • good decision to throw it away (says Lynch).
  • bad run by moreno. bad play call to call a run to moreno on 2nd and 10.
  • bad pressure give-up by franklin, this was a fast sack by avril, and tebow's arm was up. lynch: "can't blame that on tim tebow".

(defense, give up a long run on 1st, great screen defense by von miller, adequate defense by harris, good coverage and stafford runs out of bounds for a mcbean sack)

3rd drive:

  • no gain by moreno, broncos behind schedule
  • I-formation, good throw/catch by Tebow/Decker. Accurate, fast, good timing, steps up in pocket. Lynch gives compliments.
  • Called run to Tebow, 3-yard gain towards right sideline. Pass attempt would have been nice.
  • Interesting play... Kuper either failed to pick up a stunt, or the play call was too clever with two running backs both releasing for outlets. Also, Tebow stepped up right into the stunt, which wasn't visible until after he stepped up. There were three linebackers in the flat and the outlets didn't look like good options. Tebow with a quick pass to a covered Royal... I think this was a combination of a good defensive play by Cunningham, and perhaps a too-clever-by-half play by McCoy. Tebow perhaps should have gone to Ball, but he looked well-covered.
  • Detroit rushed five with two more on delay, and looking at the routes, it looks like Tebow didn't even have an option.  Sacked.
  • Drive notes. I think Tebow had a good pass play to Decker. Maybe Tebow should have gone to Ball instead of Royal, but he was also rushed and Ball got open late. The called run to Tebow got us behind schedule and a pass attempt would have been better there. Both sacks are not attributable to Tebow.

(defense, a long quarterback run and Bunkley's tickey-tack penalty give Detroit really good field position all of a sudden. good almost-sack by marcus thomas, then *awesome* pass defense by Brian Dawkins. field goal.)

4th drive:

  • three-yard run to Ball. Ok play call. But are there no high-percentage passes that can be thrown here?
  • Detroit rushes four, with three additional soon after. Tebow throws on target to J.Thomas at the first down marker, who drops it. Come on, J.Thomas - that was in the hands.
  • 3rd-and-seven again, and behind schedule. Here it looks like Decker in the slot was his first read, but Detroit rushed seven again, and Tebow had to make the decision to throw to his second read before Decker made his move. Demaryius Thomas was covered downfield, and it doesn't look like Tebow had a third option near the first-down markers. Throw looked a bit off-target, but the pass was defensed anyway and would have definitely been incomplete if in-bounds.
  • Drive notes. Tebow wasn't given much chance to succeed here, with J.Thomas dropping a pass, and a low-percentage play call on 3rd down. McCoy should have recognized that Detroit was regularly bringing pressure by now.

(defense - some poor rush defense - easy to convert a 3rd-and-1. then detroit has some bad play-calling of their own, creating a 3rd-and-long again. Damn, Lynch is good - "they moved Calvin Johnson to the slot to get him AWAY from champ bailey..." first down calvin johnson. poor rush defense again… I think that they are playing both woodyard and williams instead of mays… dumervil causes an ayers sack!)

5th drive:

  • First clearly bad play by Tebow. The lineup had one wide receiver, everyone else on the line. Tebow had Fells open, and chose to go for Decker instead, who it looked like might be open, but he just missed Decker. I think the bad play is more the overthrow than the decision since he probably had confidence he'd make the throw, but Fells had an easy first down there. Tebow was already into his throwing motion when Fells was coming open - some more patience from Tebow would have been good here. He wasn't pressured yet, there was time.
  • Called run to Moreno on a 2nd-and-10, for four yards. Ugh. Come on, this is not how you use Moreno. Throw an outlet to him, or run Ball.
  • Tebow in spread. Detroit rushes five and blitzes sixth in the A-gap. Tebow throws behind Decker and it's knocked away. Tebow could have thrown a more accurate throw.
  • Drive notes: Tebow had two inaccurate throws, and on one he arguably had a better option. Fair criticism to call this a bad drive for Tebow.

(defense… oof, first catch by Johnson against Bailey, and D.J. almost had a sack on Stafford. Bad first-down rush defense again. Then it's the Tony Scheffler show, touchdown.)

6th drive:

  • Draw by Tebow. Six yards on first down isn't bad.
  • This looked like another called run for Tebow, it didn't do as well. I don't know if this is because of McCoy or Tebow. Well-defensed, but a short 3rd-down.
  • It looks like it's designed as a rub/pick to get Royal free, but D.Thomas doesn't get enough of a push against his guy to give Royal room, Royal turns short of the first-down marker, and D.Thomas releases his guy too soon, enabling him to make the tackle. On target throw by Tebow, bad play by the receivers, I think mostly D.Thomas. Punt.

(special teams - two personal fouls on kick… sets Detroit up for another touchdown. Defense: Calvin Johnson on Chris Harris… Fox was later unapologetic about leaving Bailey out of the slot. Touchdown Detroit.)

7th drive:

  • 29 seconds left. A pass to Moreno - *this* is how you're supposed to use Moreno, he almost broke that tackle.
  • Tebow sacked, there was a holding penalty early in the play anyway. It looks like Tebow is holding the ball too long, but it's all slow-developing receiver routes, probably trying to get a "go-for-the-gold" big play before the half. Can't really fault Tebow for this.
  • Run by Moreno out of bounds.
  • Tebow deliberately throws downfield to exhaust the clock.

One legitimately bad drive by Tebow in the entire half.

This is a Fan-Created Comment on The opinion here is not necessarily shared by the editorial staff of MHR

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