I have a well-documented dislike of Tim Tebow. Here’s why.
He’s not a good pro quarterback. Okay, I’m not just being a hater. He’s orchestrated some relatively exciting come-from-behind victories. But here’s the thing. I don’t hold him entirely responsible for how much the Broncos suck (Josh McDaniels did tremendous damage to the team during his short stint as coach), but if he were a better quarterback, there’s a good chance the Broncos wouldn’t always be down at the last minute. There was one game the Broncos won where he completed two passes. Two! I suspect even I could complete two passes in an NFL game. I understand that the team won, but a quarterback who completes two passes is not worthy of the praise that is constantly heaped on Tebow.
Despite the fact that he’s not a good pro quarterback, he gets more hype than any other athlete in Denver since, well, I don’t even know. I haven’t been in Denver all that long (well after the Elway days), but I don’t even remember Carmelo Anthony or Joe Sakic getting this much hype. And they were actually good.
He has aligned himself with and worked on behalf of a right-wing organization (Focus on the Family) that intends to oppress women of child-bearing age, gay men, and lesbians. Focus on the Family advances an anti-choice and anti-LGBT-rights agenda. Tim Tebow appeared in a Focus on the Family commercial that aired during Super Bowl XLIV. The commercial focused on Tebow and his mom, who allegedly was advised to have an abortion for health reasons when she was pregnant with him but is glad she didn’t and her “miracle baby” made it into the world. This is nice for her (seriously). Although the ad didn’t specifically mention abortion, everybody knows what Focus on the Family stands for and everybody knows what it meant. I find Focus on the Family and their agenda completely reprehensible, and I find Tim Tebow’s association with Focus on the Family gross.
He’s just too in-your-face with his religion. Listen, I don’t hate him for being religious. And I don’t think people should keep their religious views hidden. I just think he takes it way too far.
I don’t expect professional athletes to conduct themselves in the same manner as people who work in offices. But come on, man. When I edit the shit out of an article at work, I don’t jump up from my desk and bust out in a spiritual Buddhist chant. I’m just doing my fucking job. When Tebow does his job, he sometimes takes a knee to bow in prayer (now referred to as Tebowing, vom.). During college, he printed Bible verses on his eye black. I just don’t understand why he has to engage in such blatant displays of his faith so often. To me, it comes off as smug, self-satisfied, and a little holier-than thou.
In his post-game press conference on Thursday, he mentioned that the game was “in God’s hands.” I want to make fun of this, but even more, I want to understand it. What does saying the game is “in God’s hands” even mean? Does it mean he honestly believes that God has any stake in or effect on the outcome of a football game? If it does, isn’t it kind of nuts that God would exert his power to affect a game and not do something about, say, the women of Bangladesh or cancer? If that’s not what it means, does it mean anything? Is it just the Tebownian way of saying “Whatever will happen will happen?” If so, what’s the point of saying it? Does he have to get in his religious talking points in each interview, even if they have no substantive purpose whatsoever? If he’s mentioning God in ways that are saying absolutely nothing, it makes him seem at least for the moment incapable of engaging in rational thought.
I’m inherently distrustful and suspicious of people who are always going on and on about how _____ they are. I believe that if you really are what you claim to be, you don’t go around telling everybody about it all the time. You just are. Tim Tebow is always putting on a big display of his faith. It reeks of insecurity and arrogance at the same time. It reminds me of teenage boys who are always talking about how much sex they have, bloggers who go on and on about how joyously happily ineffably alively alive they are, and couples who never miss an opportunity to squee about how deeply and passionately in love they are. The more you do this kind of thing, the less I believe you. If you’re the most virtuous of the virtuous who never thinks a bad thought or says a bad word about anyone or anything, I don’t trust you. I’m suspicious of Tim Tebow and his all-perfect-all-the-time persona.
I don’t think professional sports are the right place for constant displays of religion. Of course I have no problem with professional athletes having whatever religious beliefs they want to have. I just don’t think they should constantly display their religious beliefs while performing as professional athletes.
I believe a city’s professional teams should represent the citizens. This includes all citizens, not just the ones who share the athletes’ beliefs. I live in Denver. The Denver Broncos should be my team. But I find it impossible to support a team that is represented by a guy who bows in prayer all the time and did a commercial for Focus on the Family. For the record, I’m sure the Broncos don’t give a shit that I decline to cheer for them because of Tim Tebow. Losing me as a fan didn’t cost them much money or scintillating blog coverage. It’s really just me. Like I had a hard time getting on board with the Rockies when they were all Jesus all the time, I’m having a hard time with the Broncos with Tim Tebow at the helm. I like my sports without a side of religion.
ETA: Here is a phenomenal interview with Jake Plummer (love him) where he discusses Tebow. Plummer (who also was a winner for the Broncos) says, “I think that when he accepts the fact that we know that he loves Jesus Christ then I think I’ll like him a little better. I don’t hate him because of that, I just would rather not have to hear that every single time he takes a good snap or makes a good handoff….”