The Quarterback Conundrum: Tim Tebow vs Matt Barkley

Once upon a time, tn 2011, Tim Tebow seemed to have a future in the NFL as a starting quarterback. He replaced Kyle Orton in 2011 and took over for a 1-4 Denver Broncos team. He had a unique style of play; that included looking more like a running back than an actual quarterback. Statically he was atrocious through the air. However, his win-to-loss ratio started up the perception that he contained some sort of “Tebow Magic”.

In the 14 games Tebow played in the 2011 campaign he completed a horrendous 46.5 percent of his throws, managing to record just 12 touchdowns. Ironically, throwing the football was not a strength of Tebow as a quarterback. He won games with a unique fashion while also relying on his team to pick up his slack until he woke up. And to Tebow’s credit he did not throw an abundance of interceptions, throwing six in the season, but he did prove to have a problem holding on to the football, recording seven fumbles.

Despite having a fumbling issue, Tebow was lethal running the football. He posted running back-type statistics, accumulating 66o yards, 5.4 per carry, and six touchdowns on the ground. He caused havoc running the read option offense. Tebow posted the highest total QBR of any quarterback in the final seven minutes of the 4th quarter in 2011; a very known, yet overlooked, statistic.

He saved, arguably, the best game of his career for the playoffs. Going up against the number one ranked defense in the NFL, Tebow threw for 316 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another 50 yards and another touchdown. He left the entire city of Pittsburgh in disarray when he finished the Steelers off in overtime with a strike across the middle of the field, to Demaryius Thomas, that ended as a 80 yard touchdown.

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 21: Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Jets throws the football before a game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on October 21, 2012 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

First thing is first, for all the fans who are yelling at the screen right now talking about how bad Tebow is, there is something to be said about a guy who won with a team the previous starter could not. That is where Tebow earned his stripes in the NFL. He compiled a 7-4 record and lead Denver back to a division crown in a weak AFC West. It also helps Tebow’s case that he is competing against Barkley who, when called upon, has played like the senior in USC who saw his draft stock fall about three rounds.

Barkley has recorded 50 total throws, and he did complete an impressive 60 % of his passes; unfortunately that is all he has done garner praise. Entering his third season Barkley has yet to find the end zone, but he has done a great job of finding the opposition. He has four interceptions and three fumbles.

While Barkley will have an opportunity to compete for the third quarterback roster spot, it comes down to one and one thing only. Chip Kelly can do more with Tebow than he can with Barkley. A read option offense consisted of Tim Tebow with DeMarco Murray, Ryan Mathews, and Darren Sproles, would be a sight to see. Not to mention running that offense at the fastest pace in the NFL. With Barkley in the line up defenses could primarily focus on stopping the run game without having to worry about Barkley through the air or keeping the ball and carrying it. While you could say no one is afraid of Tebow throwing the football, it is inconceivable that anyone would be blasphemous enough to ignore the threat he is on the ground.

Barkley may be on his way out of Philadelphia, and if he is not then Tebow may be on his way out the entire league for the final time. No more second chances, Tebow is a bigger asset to the birds then Barkley is and he has to go out and prove it.


In a poll that PhillySportsNetwork- @PhiladelphiaSN- posted on twitter for the fans, 85 % of the voters favor Tebow over Barkley to make it past cuts and be apart of the final 53 man roster.