"I expect to die in bed, my successor will die in prison and his successor will die a martyr in the public square. His successor will pick up the shards of a ruined society and slowly help rebuild civilization, as the church has done so often in human history."
Cardinal Francis George
Timothy “Tim" Richard Tebow, humble pro athlete, missionary and major philanthropist, is currently playing minor league baseball as a New York Mets farmhand. For the past 2 years Tebow has toured rural America in baseball's development leagues while struggling to make it to the major leagues at 29 years old.
Professional athletes transitioning successfully to another sport are extremely rare. If Tebow succeeds at transitioning from the NFL to major league baseball, given his advanced age for an athlete playing professional sports, it will be unprecedented and historic. Tebow is already drawing more fans to games than any minor league player in history.
Professional athletes usually don't muster a lot of sympathy from the public. They have blessed lives and can make tremendous amounts of money with perks. The star athletes and most of the better players are treated well.
They are popular celebrities, even after retiring from play. Looking to the New York Yankees baseball team for examples, some athletes like Paul O'Neill have a local fan base, others like Derek Jeter have a national following. Alex Rodriguez is among the few athletes known internationally.
Yet even marginal professional athletes are making more money than almost all of their fan base, many of whom are struggling financially but support pro sports nonetheless.
Still, pro athletes are paid well because they have exceptional gifts and passion for what they do. Only a small percentage of high school players will participate in the NCAA, and an even smaller percentage of those players will enter professional sports leagues. Only a few athletes in professional sports will have sustained careers. Many athletes, despite their talent, will be unable to continue in their sport due to injuries.
The chance that a child who loves to play sports will become a star college or pro player someday is astronomically small. So to unfairly deny a talented professional player an opportunity to realize his lifelong passion is insidious.
In the West, certainly in America, a level playing field, equality, is expected and demanded in all endeavors. We are free to pursue our passions and our happiness under the law. We are free to express our religious beliefs under the US Constitution and the laws of most Western nations. That's true even in the workplace of professional sports.
Using this perspective, Tim Tebow has clearly been denied his natural God given rights ONLY because he openly expressed the Christian faith.
Tim Tebow, Instant NFL Star Quarterback
In 2011, in just his second season in the NFL, Tim Tebow came off the Denver Bronco bench in mid-season to play starting quarterback. As quarterback, the most important position on any football team, he led a floundering 1-4 Denver NFL team to the playoffs and eventually to a playoff win. After scoring a touchdown, Tebow would kneel in humble prayer, which became known as Tebowing. Tebow was shifting his personal glory to God's glory.
After games, Mr. Tebow almost always praised Jesus Christ to large television audiences. This consistent Christian expression was previously unheard of in the NFL.
Tebow was immediately football's most sponsor endorsed athlete. He was a true embodiment of All-American values. Most of the American public had become turned off to professional athletes as role models, too many were involved in scandals, some in violent felonies such as domestic violence and a few in homicide.
TV exposure would bring Tebowmania to an even larger American and global audience. If Tebow would make it to the Super Bowl, his star would become a supernova in sports. The 2015 Super Bowl was witnessed by the largest audience in TV history.
Simultaneously, Mr. Tebow was vilified by the media and mocked by TV shows like Saturday Night Live. Mainstream journalists criticized him, mostly for not keeping his Christian religious beliefs to himself.
Victories define a quarterback. Some passers can accumulate tremendous, even record breaking statistics, but cannot achieve key wins. Tebow won games.
How was Tebow's success rewarded? He was traded, after being given a choice of two of the worst teams in the NFL to play. Then he was benched.
So it began. By the end of the very next football season, Mr. Tebow was healthy, young and developing as a player, had a great attitude, a history of winning, anxious to play, and yet was unemployed.
He prayed, he won, he disappeared...
How could this be?
THE MEDIA DEPLOYS THE MYTH OF 'TEBOW THE TERRIBLE QUARTERBACK AND FOOTBALL PLAYER'
Tebowing and Tebow's spoken praise of God while in uniform was not banned by his employer, the NFL, as a condition of employment. His testimony to faith is otherwise protected by the US Constitution as freedom of speech and the exercise of religion. The Bill of Rights did not restrict religious freedom or expression by using words like 'freedom of belief' or 'freedom of worship.' As Ross Douthat stated, the First Amendment's protection of the free exercise of religion cannot be limited to church attendance on Sunday. The American Founders expected its' citizens and communities to be able to live their faith as Jesus had-mostly outside the 4 walls of a church.
Still, Tim Tebow became the victim of cultural politics. He was blackballed by the NFL. His public expressions of positive Christianity were intolerable to the powerful cultural elites.
The media could not discredit Mr. Tebow by his deed or spoken word. Mr. Tebow lives a pristine and scandal free personal life. His public statements were never offensive or off-color. Mr. Tebow couldn't be baited into responding in anger to personal attacks made by the media or other football players or coaches.
So some in the media invented the myth of Tebow being a bad quarterback. News services, blogs TV and radio routinely delivered the narrative via a national sports news template, which invariably pointed out Tebow's deficiencies and unorthodox delivery. The gatekeepers of news services, blogs and TV gleefully obliged. If nothing else, controversy attracts readers and viewers.
Stories and sports opinion columnists followed the 'bad quarterback' template loyally.
Most who stated Tebow was a poor player knew it was nonsense. Some followed it out of ignorance of the game, or just to promote news outlets or blogs using controversy.
Mr. Nate Scott, a journalist for the national publication USA Today, provides a perfect example of this template:
I don’t really love how (Tebow) throws a football. He’s not very good at that...The NFL is objectively more hilarious when Tim Tebow is in it.
He’s become a symbol of everything ridiculous and silly about this league...
He’s a not-very-talented quarterback who happens to be a very good person, one who ticks off half the country and is admired by half the country (and worshipped in some parts of Florida.)
...sit in a bar and to play devil’s advocate and say you love Tim Tebow and see diehard NFL fans’ heads explode...
...he stinks at quarterback...
Excerpt from USA TODAY Sports
Mr. Scott's negative comments about Mr. Tebow simply have no basis in reality. No poll or survey indicates half the country hates him, or that 'diehard' sports fans lack respect for Mr. Tebow's football skills. He can throw the football effectively and has been a winning quarterback and team leader.
The intent of the story is clear: poisoning the well by painting Mr. Tebow as a bad football player, thereby making it risky for NFL owners, GM's and coaches to hire and play him.
At best, the media narrative stated Tebow was learning to play the pro quarterback position, while his frustrated coaches, GM and owner looked on. Tebow's practice sessions were scrutinized and criticized by biased journalists, unnamed sources and an occasional active or retired player who sought to be relevant again.
Tebow is probably the only athlete in sports history whose preseason practices were regular news feed. Yet practice sessions can be irrelevant to quarterback game play. Some players shine in practice, and do poorly in games. Some do well in games and poorly in practice.
At worst, Tebow was tagged in these stories as a terrible quarterback. Sports commentators stated Tebow was really a running back or tight end type playing out of position.
They suggested Tebow was given star credentials only by overzealous Christian fans. Tebow can only hold his team back from success, pundits warned or implied, and those football people who tie their ship to his will sink along with him.
Yet, the Denver Broncos did not win the Super Bowl for 4 years since Tebow's departure, even though Tebow was replaced by one of the greatest regular season passers of all time, Peyton Manning. Manning's play in the NFL Championship that Denver won with him, Super Bowl 50, was poor. He only threw 2 touchdowns in 3 playoff games that year. The Denver defense were the stars of their playoff run, not Tebow's replacement.
MEDIA TARGETS TEBOW IN COLLEGE
Even kosher salt can't remove the stink from the rancid myth of Tebow: the poor football player. In major college football games for the SEC, Tebow wore Biblical passages on his eye black paint. In the 2009 BCS Championship Game, he wore John 3:16 on his eye black; the verse was the highest-ranked Google search term over the next 24 hours, generating 94 million searches. The NCAA banned lettering on eye black right after Tebow departed college.
Given Tebow's public expression of faith during nationally televised college football games, Tebow came under media scrutiny that other college football players were not subjected to.
The various personal and professional attacks and negative TV commentary on Tim Tebow not being NFL QB material goes back as far as 2008 while Tebow was still in college. The articles are almost all contradictory, many hedging their bets as they poison the well for Mr. Tebow.
For example, Mel Kiper maintained Tebow would not be drafted in the first round as a quarterback, being more suited as a halfback or tight end, UNLESS ”...a good NFL quarterbacks coach work out the kinks in his delivery and turn him into a pro passer."
NFL football is the most technology driven sport in history. NFL coaches were watching films of games long before baseball or other sports analyzed their players. NFL coaches, and the players themselves, routinely work on their mechanics, using video and computers.
Billy Kilmer's coaches helped him improve his mechanics long before football became computerized. Tim Tebow was inevitably going to improve his game, as almost all professional football players do, simply by following routine steps.
Joseph Goebbels and Adolf Hitler would have been impressed with how the media used the big lie, repeated over and over, to unfairly sully Mr. Tebow's great skill set and legacy.
WHO IS TIM TEBOW, THE ATHLETE?
Tim Tebow was one of the all-time winning college players. He has been called the strongest human who ever played NFL quarterback.
Mr. Tebow is built like a linebacker with the heart of a lion. Yet he runs the 40-yard dash in a speedy 4.7 seconds. Some defensive players could not tackle him without the help of other players. He is the only NFL quarterback who routinely knocked down and rolled over defenders while running with the ball.
Tim Tebow won two national college football championships.
Tebow was a great passer in college. He is the second most efficient passer in the history of college football.
He was the first college sophomore to win the Heisman Trophy. He engineered dramatic come from behind wins in college and the NFL with sheer determination. He engineered six come from behind wins and seven game winning touchdowns, while starting only 14 games in 2 seasons for the Denver NFL team.
Tebow defines a 'clutch' football player. Like Derek Jeter, the former New York Yankees shortstop, neither player exhibited the best mechanics at their position when compared to their peers. Yet, when it counted, they both found ways to win games.
Many successful quarterbacks in NFL history were unorthodox passers, and many unsuccessful quarterbacks had perfect mechanics.
FIRST EXCUSE FOR WHY MR. TEBOW COULD NOT PLAY IN THE NFL
The Denver Broncos drafted him in the first round before the 2010 season. His critics maintained he could not play in the NFL because he ran the college style read option offense.
'Read option' means the quarterback reads the defense before the snap, then decides on options, usually to either hand off or pitch out the ball to a running back, or run with the ball himself. For the last couple of decades, almost all NFL quarterbacks routinely throw the ball out of the 'pocket,' or drop back to pass the ball. They do not run with the ball very much, to avoid injuries.
The NFL saw Tebow have success in Denver in 2010-2011 with variations of the read option offense. Both he and the team running backs were racking up amazing amounts of rushing yards per game.
The 2011 Denver Broncos, with Tebow at quarterback, were the most successful team in the NFL to run a read-option offense. Tebow reinvigorated the pro game by reintroducing quarterback rushing, for awhile. In 2012, NFL teams in Seattle, San Francisco and Washington began using the read option systems successfully.
The read option offense has slipped out of favor the last couple of years. The quarterbacks running that style of offense lacked Tebow's size, strength and athleticism. Those quarterbacks were easy targets for defensive players and were getting injured too often. Russell Wilson, Colin Kaepernick and Robert Griffith III were all read option quarterbacks who began having success running out of the pocket in 2012 and a time thereafter, but who have suffered serious injuries in the last few years and lost significant mobility.
Joe Montana, former star NFL QB, stated: "So you look at Tim Tebow - he's a great guy, does a lot of great things. But when you complete 40-something percent of your passes, even in the low 50s, you're not going to make it."
Tebow's completion rate was under 50% in Denver's playoff win over Pittsburgh in 2011. Tebow completed only 47% of his passes that day. Yet Tebow threw for 2 touchdowns and 316 yards, set up 2 field goals, ran for another touchdown and rushed for 50 yards that day. Denver scored 20 points in the second quarter alone that day. That's a good day even by Mr. Montana's high standards.
A read option quarterback like Mr. Tebow cannot be evaluated by the criteria used for a traditional pocket passer. Tebow was a threat to score by running or throwing, on broken plays and on days a defense would shut down the passing the game.
The pocket passer rarely runs the ball and will throw the ball into the stands on a broken play, or when all the pass receivers are covered. Tebow can run the ball for a first down or more in any situation. Tebow could scramble behind the line of scrimmage, then pass the ball for long yardage. Tebow's pure passing stats weren't as good as other quarterbacks, but he won more games than most NFL quarterbacks that year.
SECOND EXCUSE FOR WHY MR. TEBOW COULD NOT PLAY IN THE NFL
As Tebow's style of play was no longer foreign to NFL offensive coordinators by 2012, his critics moved the goal posts. They stated the real reason he cannot play QB is that he cannot throw proficiently. He releases the ball out of his hand too slowly. They complain he cannot throw accurately, even in practice.
Yet unorthodox passers like Joe Kapp, Billy Kilmer and Bobby Douglass, among others, all had successful NFL careers as starting quarterbacks. Kilmer stated that he threw footballs like they were knuckleballs-i.e. erratically and unpredictably.
In contrast, Joe Namath is commonly reputed to have the fastest release in football history among the most precise passers, only won one Super Bowl. Namath lacked mobility due to a weak knee he injured while playing in college.
Namath's success was limited to his college days with the Crimson Tide, and his first few years in the AFL/NFL.
After winning the Super Bowl, Namath missed quite a few games from injuries, and never had another winning season. Defenses knew he lacked the mobility to run out of the pocket. After defenses would shut down a passing play, Joe Namath would have to throw the ball away to start over the next play.
Tim Tebow was a constant threat to break out of the pocket and run for tremendous yardage. After the defense shuts down his passing options, Tebow can run for a first down or a touchdown. Tebow is a dual threat. No matter how effective the defense is, Tebow can still engineer a scoring drive.
Tebow will never have perfect mechanics like Joe Namath, Joe Montana or Tom Brady. Tebow does not need to be perfect to win NFL games.
John Kirkwood stated the problem colorfully but succinctly:
What drives these critics that seethe at the mention of “Tebow,” like a vampire facing a crucifix? A slow release does not create that kind of venom and if awkward mechanics were the reason, then Bobby Layne, Joe Kapp, Bernie Kosar and Jim Kelly would have been stoned as heretics.
The truth is that it is the best part of Tim Tebow that they can’t accept – his character. They hide behind the (criticism of Tebow's) release and the mechanics, so they don’t appear small and pitiful.
Tebow's NFL stats and game time performance as a starting quarterback did not reflect poor passing skills. Tebow set modern NFL playoff passing records against the Pittsburgh Steelers with several medium and long range completions. In 2012, Tim was ranked number 95 by his peers in the NFL Top 100. Near the end of the 2011-2012 season, Tebow was ranked number five out of the NFL’s 32 starting quarterbacks.
Tebow knows the secret of working class players like Billy Kilmer, who have been more successful than their more skilled peers: hard work beats talent when talent does not work as hard. God helps those who help themselves.
Mr. Tebow was traded to the NY Jets by the Denver franchise after the 2011 season. While not yet out of the NFL, Tebow was certainly being handed his hat.
He was not given a serious chance to play quarterback in New York. He sat behind failing quarterback Mark Sanchez. Tebow has a career passer rating of 75.3, having thrown 17 touchdowns, ran for 12 rushing touchdowns, and thrown nine interceptions during his time as a starter. As a comparison, Mark Sanchez has a career rating of 74.1.
The contempt toward all things Tebow by the powers that be was so over the top that actor Alec Baldwin showing pity – “the only thing more imaginary than Manti Te’o’s girlfriend is the Jets offensive package for Tebow.”
After being released by the Jets, Tebow was not able to find a NFL job. He was cut after tryouts with the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles.
NFL HEAD COACH ADMITS TEBOW WAS BLACKBALLED
Tebow was virtually blackballed by most of the NFL, according to an AFC/NFL coach, supposedly due to the 'media frenzy’ that surrounded him.
That premise is absurd if you define 'media frenzy' as Tebow fandom. The NFL is part of the entertainment industry. The league is in perpetual marketing mode. Executives relentlessly seek and drum up media attention to increase their ratings and profit. Tebow brought ratings and positive attention to their product. Unlike other infamous NFL players, he was not torturing canines, beating his children or wife, or involved in late nightclub shootings.
Media frenzy must then be defined as the negative publicity generated by Tebow's public Christian expression. He is a casualty of the so-called cultural wars, or what should be called the aggressive deChristianization of America.
Since 2010, the media has attempted to intimidate NFL ownership and coaches with negative stories about Mr. Tebow's skill set, his legacy, and imposed threats of dire consequences for those who, in their audacity and poor judgement, attempt to employ him. The media pressure excludes the public and private pressure no doubt employed on coaches, executives and owners to avoid employing Mr. Tebow.
Tim Tebow is a much greater threat to the cultural elites than other Christian symbols which have been targeted for removal from the public square. People rarely notice a Ten Commandments monument at the local courthouse. Most school children just prattle off the words "under God' in the Pledge of Allegiance. Tebow was a prime time living promotion of Christianity to millions of TV viewers every week.
Colin Kaepernick, a free agent, may have been blackballed by the NFL from a starting or backup QB job, but for reasons which contrast with Tebow's situation. First, he performed poorly last year as a starter for a losing San Francisco NFL team. Secondly but primarily, his black lives matter demonstrations during the National Anthem stirred angry responses from fans and threats of an NFL boycott. Concurrently, perhaps coincidentally, NFL TV ratings dropped at the same time fans threatened an NFL boycott, and never recovered.
Kaepernick may have cost the NFL advertising dollars and viewers, some of whom may find alternative sources to spend their entertainment dollar, such as fantasy football and video games.
Tebow won games and increased revenue for the NFL. In 2013, despite being unemployed after having been released by the New York Jets as a backup Quarterback, Tebow was still the most influential athlete in the world, according to Forbes Magazine.
Tebow's popularity made him a Christian cultural and financial powerhouse and a significant threat to secular elites and agnostic globalists looking to end Christian adherence.
TEBOWTIME VS. THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST
Just as the film 'The Passion of the Christ' brought Christianity back to the masses via hip visual media, Tebow brought Christ back to sports fans and the larger public.
The media launched criticism of the film before it was released to the public.
The media launched criticism of Tebow before he was drafted by the NFL.
Both the film and Mr. Tebow threatened to impact Western culture, and beyond, by positive expression of his Christian faith in major media. The cultural elites had already cut most Christianity, and public Christian expression, out of the public square and mainstream media.
American football is not a truly global sport, but America still sets the cultural agenda for much of the world. Both the film and Mr. Tebow would reintroduce or at least reinforce Christian faith for younger people around the globe.
Tebow made praying publicly to Jesus Christ cool. Kids all over the country were Tebowing, some to be trendy, some actually praying.
The Passion of the Christ film (POTC), Jim Caviezel, the actor who played Jesus, and Mel Gibson, the film's genius director, were all blacklisted from Hollywood for years.
Caviezal was being promoted in the media as an up and coming star just before he made the Passion film. CNN called him a star in the making. Caviezel was signed to only one major movie role after the POTC was released, a film called the Outlander.
Harvey Weinstein of the Weinstein Company is one of the biggest producers in Hollywood. Weinstein was a vocal opponent of POTC and Mel Gibson. Weinstein Co. purchased the rights to the Outlander film in mid-production.
Weinstein then inexplicably took a huge financial hit on the $47 million dollar production by sending it straight to DVD, without promotion, after a contractually mandated limited theater release. The film was only permitted to gross $166,00 before it was yanked from theaters.
Outlander received mixed reviews, which usually means box office gold for the genre of action/sci-fi films. If the film has been routinely distributed instead of having been yanked out of theaters, Outlander would have certainly made more than it's $47 million dollar budget.
Hollywood was willing to intentionally lose tens of millions of dollars to punish Caviezel.
The Outlander film became popular globally, making over 6 million dollars, and had success on Canada Netflix. Like Caviezel's film career, the movie was blotted out in America.
Caviezel only began getting star quality acting work again after he went public with how he was treated. He spoke to some churches about losing his film career, but not regretting giving up his film career to make POTC. His comments were published and went viral among sympathetic Christians, who took up Caviezel's cause. Jim Caviezel was soon after cast in the lead role in the hit CBS TV series Person of Interest, which ran 5 seasons.
"All of the sudden I stopped being one of five most popular actors in the studio, and I hadn't done anything wrong. I just played Jesus," the actor told Polish journalist and film critic Lukasz Adamski in a recent interview.
Still, his film career as a young leading man was stolen from him forever.
Mel Gibson had to create his own distributing company to get the Passion film shown. He invested his life savings to get his film into theaters, since Hollywood had successfully pressured all major distributors to not distribute the film to theaters. (Despite being one of Hollywood's best film makers and storytellers, Gibson was unable to get major financing on his films after he made POTC, until he released Hacksaw Ridge over a decade later.)
Israel and some Muslim countries banned the POTC film, nonetheless it broke box office records in Muslim majority nations.
Israel's commercial distributors colluded to ban the film, though every effort was made to make it appear no ban occurred.
The authorized commercial distributor of the film in Israel simply refused show it. He stated the film generated 'no interest' there, despite being the largest grossing R rated film in history, with dialogue in the local languages of Aramaic and Hebrew. At the time, Israel had a population of over 160,000 Christians and almost 1.5 million Muslims.
Many Muslims were curious and anxious to see the film. Most Islamic sects revere Jesus as a non-divine Messiah, and His Mother Mary as the holiest woman in mankind's history.
So as not to mislead the reader, this does not mean the 2 religions intersect in their beliefs of Jesus and Mary-actually they are gravely opposed. In most Muslim sects, the Jesus in Islam is supposed to come back at the end of days to 'break the cross,' which Muslims consider idolatry. Muslims believe Jesus never died on the cross. Jesus death on the Cross, and His resurrection, are considered false scriptures to Muslims and a sacrilege to Islam. Further the idea that Mary carried God in her womb is heresy in Islam, so is the idea that Jesus, a human, could be a deity.
In Islam, God is remote and primordial, and would never stoop to becoming a human as Christians believe Jesus did. To Muslims, such beliefs are scandalous and can result in a death sentence under Sharia law.
Still, Muslims had a chance to see a film in Israel which presented the Christian view of Jesus, without the fear they would be stoned or beheaded as they might be if caught watching the film in Sharia ruled nations. Israel denied Israeli Muslims this golden opportunity.
Nonetheless, there were nightly private showings at the hotels in the Christian populated section of East Jerusalem on Easter. Eventually an Israeli cinema art house showed the film for free around Christmas that year, long after the film was out of theaters and was available on DVD and the internet.
The film did very well in majority Muslim nations, either in film, by pirated copies or DVD, including the Levant neighbors Lebanon and Syria.
The POTC was hysterically misrepresented by some in the media as antisemetic, or a homoerotic exercise in sadomasochism, and so on.
Our secular culture puts positive emphasis on violence as entertainment, hyper sexuality, sexual deviance and identity politics. Some critics could not or would not relate to the film, except through these filters.
In fact, the film was a theologically rich and relatively accurate Biblical portrayal of the last hours of Jesus life, a visual rendition of the Stations of the Cross.
Hollywood only 'forgave' Mel Gibson after major film stars such as such as Robert Downey Jr. and journalists like Allison Hope Weiner, an observant Jew, called Hollywood out on it's hypocrisy to blacklist Gibson, and demanded they end it.
Tebowing has been misrepresented. Some suggested Mr. Tebow uses Tebowing to curry favor with God for his team. Non-believers pose their own red herring question as an accusation against Tebow fans: 'why would God care so much about a football game when there's so much suffering in the world?" Mr. Tebow and Christians would ask that same question.
In fact, Mr. Tebow was simply giving humble and appropriate praise to God, as he has done in every game he’s played in since high school.
Our secular culture puts tremendous emphasis on spectator sports and football in particular. We glorify our sports heroes, and build monuments to the games.
Tebowing turns that on its ear. The hero takes a knee, reminding us, even while the crowd cheers and millions review the broadcast, that we should glorify the Creator, not His Creation, or ours.
"...whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." 1 Corinthians 10:31.
Mr. Tebow’s critics and The Passion of the Christ’s critics reveal a lot about themselves when they engage in their Christophobic hate.
TEBOW'S LAST NFL CHANCE
The NFL has been accused of collusion in the past, usually over player's bargaining agreements or avoiding doing business with players with severe emotional troubles, drug addiction or criminal issues. For 2 years Tim Tebow could not find a pro football quarterback job, even though many teams were desperate for starting quarterbacks who could win games like Tebow.
In 2009, the Philadelphia Eagles gave Michael Vick a second chance to play football. Other NFL clubs avoided signing Vick, due to public pressure from animal rights groups and animal lovers. Christians, like Tony Dungy, publicly asked Vick be forgiven, since Mr. Vick did his time and expressed remorse.
After a 2-year layoff, Tim Tebow signed a one-year contract in the spring of 2015, following a tryout for Chip Kelly, coach of the Philadelphia Eagles franchise. The press immediately began using the antiTebow narratives.
Tebow's signing brought extreme scrutiny on Kelly. Whenever Tim Tebow publicly promotes his faith, the media would follow that up in the next few hours and days by quickly publishing more negative stories about Chip Kelly and Tim Tebow.
Not surprisingly, Tebow was cut by Philadelphia after playing extremely well in the preseason. Kelly went on to a losing season with mediocre quarterbacks and was fired.
DOUBLE STANDARDS USED AGAINST CHRISTIANS
In 2014, the media inaccurately reported that a Muslim NFL player was penalized for praying, though the player agreed that he had violated league rules by sliding.
Commentators stepped over each other in support of the Muslim player for expressing his faith. Yet, Tebow had been ruthlessly condemned for his on the field Christian prayer.
Bill Donahue bravely stated the obvious truth:
Our cultural elites have decided that Christianity, which is the font of freedom, is repressive, and Islam, which is the font of repression, is unfairly stereotyped...Christians are victimizers and Muslims are victims.
The media consistently labels Mr. Tebow as controversial and
polarizing. Given the horrific image issues of some NFL players, calling Tebow polarizing is disingenuous and plainly sinister.
Mr. Tebow consistently brings high TV ratings. In 2013, a week after being released by the NY Jets, he topped Forbes poll as the most influential athlete, well above Peyton Manning.
Mr. Tebow never criticized anyone in the press, the NFL or the public for personal attacks against him. Yet, American Christians barely defended him as he was run out of the league.
“Polarized,” has been defined as to “become concentrated around opposing extremes.”
Mr. Tebow's nearly universal popularity begs the question- what are the extremes? Silent public prayer is now an extreme act? What population coalesces at the other pole, somehow offended by Tebow's public gesture of prayer, made in silence?
Polls indicate over 77% of Americans favor allowing students to say prayers as part of the graduation ceremonies.
The cultural elite are most certainly offended, knowing Mr. Tebow is Christian, public about it, and inspires people to faith.
Michael Sam, the first openly gay player drafted by an NFL team, lacked skills to play for an NFL team. He was cut, then flopped and quit the Canadian Football League.
Both Mr. Sam and Mr/s. Bruce/Caitlin Jenner, the former gold medal Olympic winner,were celebrated in the media, praised for their public expressions of sexuality. Sam and Jenner were painted by the media as hero and heroine. Nickelodeon Kids gave an NFL player who grabs his crotch in the end zone an award.
Yet the player who took a few seconds to give glory to God after a touchdown is somehow ‘polarizing’ to a still largely (but perhaps nominally) Christian America. Borrowing a phrase from a famous TV satirist, calling Mr. Tebow polarizing and implying extremism lacks "truthiness".
Mr. Tebow's size, his ability to work under pressure, his work ethic, his positive attitude and lifestyle, and extreme physical training made him a much more likely candidate to sustain a relatively long NFL career. He may have played for a decade or longer as a starting NFL quarterback.
He has already 'infected' other players and the culture at large.
As a starting NFL quarterback, Mr. Tebow would be kneeling and praising Jesus Christ as much as 16 times a year, often for a national TV audience.
He would praise God after the games for media, not to mention his exposure on preseason, playoff games and public appearances. ESPN and news services would broadcast his 'Tebowing'.
The dark forces of our culture have not and will not tolerate this.
In 2010 the NCAA passed the Tebow rule (not to be confused with the Tebow law) banning messages on eye paint.
Tebow scrawled "John 3:16" on his eye black for the 2009 BCS Championship Game, 94 million people Googled the verse-making it the highest-ranked search term for that day.
Sincere Christian athletes like Russell Wilson will thank Christ in a post game interview, before a very limited and passive TV or radio audience. Tebow was providing national TV audiences during game time with visual expressions of his Christian faith.
You couldn't miss him Tebowing or John 3:16 printed below Tebow's eyes. That is why Tim Tebow is out of football and Christian players like Russell Wilson are still playing; Tebow brought the Gospel visually to large captive audiences, who couldn't miss it. Like Mel Gibson, Tebow was dangerous to Christophobes because he reached people thru the visual media, the language of the masses and today's youth.
WEIRD SCENES INSIDE THE NFL GOLDMINE
On September 5, 2015 Mr. Tebow was cut from the Philadelphia Eagles roster on the last day of cuts. Oddly, it left the Eagles a player short of the 53 player minimum.
Coach Kelly announced Tebow was "not good enough" to be the Eagles third string quarterback.
Yet, a couple of days before the Eagles traded quarterback Matt Barkley, Tebow's only competition for a quarterback slot. The press and most fans assumed that Tebow won the job.
They both saw significant playing time in the last preseason game against the NY Jets. By all accounts, Tebow played extremely well. With two minutes left in the second half, Tebow brought the Eagles down the field for a touchdown, just as he did so many times with the Broncos. The fact he was not playing against Jet's starters was irrelevant. Tebow's passes were perfect spirals, always out of the reach of defenders. His often criticized mechanics were perfect.
He barely had time to throw, but he found open receivers by scanning the field and moving around in the pocket. He often threw half the length of the football field, showcasing his strong and accurate arm.
Tebow froze Jet defenders like a deer in the headlights. The Jets never knew if he was going to run the ball, hand it off or pass it.
Tebow's ability to run the ball himself enhances the entire running game. Defenders must wait to move in until it's clear to them whether the running back has the ball or Tebow kept it. Tebow goes in one direction, the runner in the other, and the defenders can't move. When Tebow started games in 2011, Denver's running game immediately and dramatically improved.
Tebow's game against the NY Jets was proof Mr. Tebow has developed into a quality NFL passer in addition to his former skill sets. He may be one of the greatest players the professional game ever saw. Yet, he's gone again. Like the great African-American baseball players of the Negro Leagues, he's being forced out of the mainstream. Chip Kelly suggested Mr. Tebow head to the Canadian Football League.
When Kelly announced that he was cutting Mr. Tebow, he stated he was seeking a third string quarterback to play right now, in case of injuries. Yet no quarterbacks were available for the Eagles to pick up off the street who can start on an NFL team.
So why did Kelly wait so long to cut Tebow? Why did he wait until AFTER Tebow had a starting quarterback caliber type game to say goodbye?
The answer is obvious. Tebow's tremendous showing of physical talent and intelligent choices in the final exhibition game made him a greater threat to the elite than ever. He's greatly improved his skill-set since leading Denver to a playoff win in 2011.
Chip Kelly, like all NFL coaches, is always just a phone call away from being fired, even for arbitrary reasons. The media was turning up the heat on him from the day he signed Tebow.
Kelly’s football decisions were scrutinized. Kelly was even challenged on whether he was a racist. Negative publicity doesn't sell ticket or generate TV ratings. Even winning games can't protect a coach who appears to have character issues or has perceived to have made poor football decisions.
Walt Michaels, NY Jets coach, was forced to resign only days after leading the team to the AFC championship game. The press leaked rumors of Michael's alcoholism and emotional strain. The Jets did not return to the AFC Championship game until decades later. Michael claimed years later he was blackballed by other owners from coaching jobs based on the bad press he received as a Jets coach.
The fact that Barkley found a team and Tebow didn't find one is evidence that Tebow has been blackballed. Tebow is a far better quarterback than Barkely.
History repeats itself. After Tebow's fantastic rookie season of going 7 - 4 (10 - 6 win-loss equivalent), the quarterback he replaced in Denver had a 1 - 4 record before Tebow was given the football. That quarterback, Kyle Orton, found meaningful work as the back-up quarterback to Tony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys.
Tebow on the other hand was out of a job after driving his team to the playoffs.
Football fans realize Tebow is better than a lot of quarterbacks in the NFL but the NFL doesn't want a quarterback with his overt display of Christianity in the league. Tebow is a quarterback that America loves more than the game itself. Tebow is still drawing record crowds as he tours rural America as a minor league baseball player.
While Tebow would improve any football team, he's been shut out. After Kelly dumped Tebow, media stories about Kelly went from questioning if he's racist or crazy, to declaring him to be an innovative, brilliant coach.
COLLUSION NOT UNUSUAL IN PRO SPORTS OR NFL
Lawsuits alleging owners collusion are not unusual in today's professional sports, including the NFL and MLB.
The NFL is a multi-billion dollar industry. Owners, coaches and the players are going to do what is in their best interests for the most part. Their best interests would obviously not include anything which threatens their positions, or the league's ability to generate revenue.
The NFL has displayed devious and malicious behavior before. The NFL had to pay out $ 1 billion to players as a result of their orchestrated deception to cover up the truth about CTE.
Mr. Tebow was forced out of the NFL with white gloves, but forced out beyond a reasonable doubt.
Mr. Tebow was not the first Christian in pro football to stick his neck out for his faith. Yet, no athlete in history has been as dedicated as Tebow to sacrificing his personal fame and career to promote Christianity.
He has lost the years in the prime of his career due to antichristian discrimination.
The reality is that Tim Tebow experienced raw discrimination for publicly expressing his Christian faith, which made it almost impossible for him to find a job, potentially cutting his promising career short in his prime.
Even if Tim Tebow makes a mark on baseball, a sport he had not played since high school, the powers of darkness have already won. Tebow's living Gospel was silenced. His football career was washed away as an example to other NFL players of what happens to you if you express your faith openly.
TIM TEBOW HAS SUFFERED A QUIET WHITE MARTYRDOM FOR HIS FAITH
Pro football is arguably mere entertainment, but sports are part of Western and global culture. For some, professional sports is spiritually inspiring. People were inspired and diverted from their troubles by Tebow's improbable scoring drives, a Dr. J physics defying dunk, or the majesty of a record setting Arod home run. For others, watching football gives them a hobby and a topic to discuss.
The purpose of this article is not to discuss sports, football or a football player. It is about how Christianity is being openly persecuted in American culture as Christians nap or hide.
The miracle of Tim Tebow is not the come from behind NFL wins in 2011. He is a monstrous physical presence on the football field. He has been a consistent winner on the big stage in college. He was going to develop as a better NFL passer if given the chance. He is a naturally gifted football player and workaholic who loves the game.
If Mr. Tebow had been an atheist, a progressive cynic, Muslim, or gay, he'd be a celebrated American icon and no doubt a starting quarterback every year since 2010.
The real divine intervention regarding Tim Tebow's football career was his example of faith and courage in this secular era.
Mr. Tebow permitted us to see the dark forces of Western culture exposed. They successfully shut him down in his prime, and openly continue to move against him in his humble comeback in baseball.
Why? Simply because he is a Christian and too noisy about it. No other reason.
Societal forces are very busy at work marginalizing Christians, removing Christianity and religious expression from the public square and eye of the camera. The subtle antichristian discrimination evident against Mr. Tebow is happening to many more people across the West, hurting the careers of Christians ranging from celebrities to everyday people.
As gays and transgenders come out of the closet, Christians are being shoved in.
Updated July 14, 2017