October 09, 2011
Despite the opinion of Denver-area billboard purchasers, I believed it would be Brady Quinn(notes) who got the call when the Denver Broncos were eventually forced to bench Kyle Orton(notes). It wasn't. It was Tim Tebow(notes).
You know by now how Tebow fared. Despite passing numbers that weren't overwhelming, he somehow got the Broncos back in the game against the Chargers. They had a chance to win it on the final play, but came up short.
I wonder what happened to Brady Quinn, though. Not that I'm arguing for or against Tebow, or saying that Quinn would've done better. You couldn't ask John Elway himself to get the Broncos closer then Tebow got them Sunday. This post isn't about the merits of either quarterback. I'm just wondering what happened to Quinn.
There were the preseason reports that Tebow wasn't even the third-best quarterback on the roster. The Broncos official website even refused to declare a winner in Quinn vs. Tebow for the backup spot. It's still like that. Fox said last week that he was giving Quinn and Tebow (along with Orton) snaps in practice, expressing no preference for one or the other.
A pure youth movement doesn't really explain it, either. If the decision was all about playing a young guy and seeing what he's got, then Quinn's just as good a call as Tebow. Quinn's 26; Tebow's 24. It's not like Quinn's been given a chance anywhere that makes it possible to conclude that he can or can't be an NFL quarterback.
I see three possible scenarios: 1) Somewhere along the way, John Fox decided that Tim Tebow was a better quarterback than Brady Quinn; 2) With benching Orton, Fox is throwing in the towel on this season and plans to look at both of his young quarterbacks; or 3) Fox gave in to public pressure to finally play Tebow.
I hope it's not the third option. That's never a good thing for a coach.
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