NFL

Did Tebow workouts affect QB status?

Image: New York Jets QB Tim Tebow (Image: Rich Barnes/US Presswire)
Tim Tebow leaves the field following a practice during Jets training camp.
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Coming into the NFL, Tim Tebow was a long shot to be a starting quarterback.

But he took over for the Denver Broncos last year and appeared to make progress — until this offseason, when he may have hurt his chances at a permanent starting job even more.

Most critics would agree that the area where Tebow needs help is his throwing motion. He takes a while to wind up to pass, resulting in occasional fumbles and poor timing with receivers. His accuracy has also been a major issue.

But while Tebow spent some time in his free months last offseason working on his passing, he also made curious choices in his other workouts — choices that may have helped his halfback-style game he popularized as a college star, but not as the NFL passer that Tebow says he wants to be.

Tebow weighed 238 pounds in 2011 with the Broncos — pretty big for a quarterback — and spent this offseason beefing up even more.

The reason Tebow reportedly added the weight, according to the Wall Street Journal, was that he thought he had to be bigger and stronger to take hits under center.

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Tebow now weighs 250 pounds — and that has some NFL people worried that he won’t be much of a passing QB anymore. Historically, quarterbacks haven’t been that big, and the ones that have — Daunte Culpepper, JaMarcus Russell and Byron Leftwich — haven’t endured that well in the league. The thinking goes that adding all that size cuts down on precision and flexibility.

The Jets have mostly used Tebow as a halfback or blocker as he backs up starter Mark Sanchez, but Tebow has said he wants to be an NFL quarterback. Even if he turns into a QB who tends to run a lot, as is Tebow’s forte, he still has to hit his spots — and adding so much bulk would dent his already-sub-50 percent completion percentage.

Furthermore, the Wall Street Journal reports, the amount of time Tebow spent with all his conditioning and bulking up in the offseason means he was spending less time studying tape or working on his throwing mechanics.

“I felt it was best for what I thought I was going to be asked to do,” Tebow told the Wall Street Journal.

In that regard, he’s right, since the Jets have needed him to block and run. But if Tebow is ever going to take over for Sanchez or lead another franchise from under center, his workout focus may get a second look.

Tagged: Jets, Tim Tebow

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