Why does Tim Tebow continue to haunt MHR and Bronco Country?
Let me quickly answer this for you: Because Tebow found a way to win - when winning was impossible - as a Denver Bronco. Because Tebow took a 1-4 team, that fully expected to be in the "Suck-For-Luck" Bowl, and turned them into a playoff team - taking us to our first playoff appearance since 2005! Because Tebow gave us the most exciting season and more importantly the most exciting playoff game/win since the 98-99 Super Bowl seasons. I know - I was at the Steelers playoff game, first level seats, and I witnessed the spectacle firsthand.
Tebow defied the odds and took a miserable Broncos Country to Candy Land when nobody thought he could. Tebow is currently my hero - and will remain that way until the man that replaced him can prove himself worthy of taking his place. I don't care what Peyton Manning did as a Colt - I'm not a Colts fan, what I care about is what Peyton Manning does as a Bronco! I'm not evaluating Peyton Manning through the rosy colored lens of Hall Of Fame Colts QB - I'm evaluating Peyton Mannings play as a 1st year Denver Bronco - and I'm not impressed!
Don't misunderstand (though many of you will), I'm not suggesting Manning has something to prove across the league - he is a Hall Of Fame QB and nobody can take that away, BUT, what I am suggesting is that Manning has something to prove to BRONCO COUNTRY. He took the place of a QB that had just done the impossible with what everyone considers to be far less talent, so it's completely fair and reasonable to expect that Manning should at a minimum, beat that 2nd Year QB's accomplishments (Manning has virtually the same team Tebow did - with some notable improvements).
Believe me when I say - we should expect better, more consistent play from Manning. John Elway expects that from Manning. Peyton Manning expects that from Peyton Manning.
To give Manning a free pass is a disservice to all that Bronco Country went through last year. To ignore our history (Tebow) and fail to compare the progress of this year's Broncos with last year's Broncos is foolish. We need to hold Manning to a higher standard of play, and higher standard of ‘winning tough games,' and anything less is a disservice to the Broncos Organization and their fans. If Elway was willing to dump my favorite Bronco player since Eddie Mac for Peyton Manning - than I fully expect Peyton Manning to win more, do more and be more than the man he replaced.
We deserve better from Manning. And I know Manning wants to give it to us, but he hasn't yet. An ‘elite' QB could have won those games we just lost in my opinion. A top 10 QB performance could have won those games, instead we got Kyle Orton-esq performances (decent numbers, but failed to make plays when he needed to in order to win).
Is the season over?? HECK NO! I fully expect to be in the Playoffs this year, considering we're in the worst division in the NFL. What I'm concerned about is our ability to beat ‘good' / ‘great' teams which essentially leaves us no better off this year than last year. My hope is that this team gels and they take their play to a level that Tebow wasn't able to last year, that was the reason Elway dumped Tebow to begin with. My hope is that we accomplish that - go deeper in the Playoffs than last year, but my gripe right now is that Manning hasn't ‘raised the level of all boats' and we were sold by Elway/Fox/MHR and others that all we needed was an ‘elite passer' to run our offense and our offensive woes would be solved. Now that those woes have continued, all of a sudden it's the WRs and TEs and O-Line, the very same group that Tebow was stuck with as a 2nd year QB - but now that it's PFM, it's the WRs/TEs, etc fault. Hypocritical to say the least. I complained all year about the WRs/TEs and the lack of talented options Tebow had to pass to, but nobody but maybe Boydy and few others even acknowledged it as a legitimate problem. Anyway - getting off topic.
All that to say, a hero should only be replaced by a hero (especially if you're dumping a 23 year old hero for a 36 year old one). I hope Peyton Manning is that guy - but so far, he's not been that guy and it's fair to point that out without these rubbish excuses to protect him. Can he improve? Yes. But we're not evaluating Peyton Manning for who he was, or what he will do in the future, but for what he's done in his 3 games as a Bronco.
Peyton Manning is better than this... And it's time he prove it in a BRONCOS uniform and become my NEW Broncos hero!