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What If Tim Tebow Was Black?

30 Aug

black tim tebow

With the impending restart of Tebow’s football career as a quarterback in the National Football League, we at AnswersFromMen.com decided to run the this article again. From September 20, 2012, we give you what would happen if Tim Tebow were a Black man.

Very rarely is it a good idea to broach the subject of race in any public forum, but this question was posed by a few readers who regularly read the “Ask A Black Guy” columns. Rather than referring this one to one of our resident African American correspondents, AnswersFromMen.com decided to ask one of our Caucasian writers the same question. Somehow, he arrived at the same answer about Tim Tebow.

Let me start by saying that I am a fan of Tim Tebow. Though I do not like how often religion is thrown around a sports arena whenever Tebow is present, I definitely respect any man with the type of conviction that Timothy Richard Tebow has displayed regularly since his college days at Florida. And, the man is a winner. Yes, winning is a function of how talented and productive the rest of your team actually is, but in the waning moments of any game Tebow makes the necessary plays.

However, the question that was posed was, “What if Tim Tebow was Black?” or more to the point, “How would Tim Tebow’s career be different if he was Black?” I firmly believe that Tim Tebow would have a completely different career if he was a Black man. He has some major shortcomings as a NFL quarterback though he continues to get chances to play that position. Tim Tebow is not an NFL quarterback. He is too inaccurate. He is too unsettled in the pocket. He is too far along in his football maturation to change the parts of his game that can make him a good quarterback. The only reason that Tim Tebow is still being given a shot as a pocket passer in the league is because he is a very handsome, very Christian White man.

America by and large is a conservative, Christian nation. We believe in the God, we believe in hard work, we believe that everyone is special, and we believe that every man, woman, or child has the right to pursue his or her dreams. And, Tim Tebow is the embodiment of the American dream. He is chastened to his morals. He is a dilligent worker with immense talent. And, he is following his dream. Americans, especially most White Americans, see themselves in him. And, I see a little bit of him in me. Older men and women remember the purity of their career goals when they first began their adult lives. They see a man that they would want their daughters to marry, and a man that they would want their sons to emulate. Children see a role model who always tries to do the right thing regardless of how difficult it may seem, and a person who chases his dreams with wild abandon. Tebow’s peers know him as a tireless worker and a fierce competitor on the football field. He represents the ideals of the working class, the aspirations of the middle class, and carries himself like a superstar without the attitude and self-absorption. By all accounts from which people are measured, Tim Tebow is a great man.

However, Tim Tebow is not a great quarterback. Tim Tebow has a career pass completion percentage of 47.3% ,and no starter in NFL history has thrown for a completion percentage under 48% since the 1965 season. Only 5 players have ever passed the football at a lower completion rate than Tebow. JaMarcus Russell, a strong armed Black quarterback who could not get his receivers the ball in the league was out of the NFL after three seasons. Tebow’s race plays a large part in his public perception and his acceptance in the NFL. Michael Bishop, a prolific, strong-armed Black quarterback from Kansas State entered the NFL as an athlete because no one believed he could be a NFL QB. He was out of the league in a year. One of the better wideouts in NFL history, Hines Ward, was converted from quarterback once he left Georgia. Pat White of West Virginia completed 64.8% of his throws in college, passed for 56 TD’s, and ran for 47, but has been a gimmick player at best for his one year in the NFL. People compare Tim Tebow to Kordell Stewart (another Black quarterback) when they want to validate his position as a running quarterback, but there is no comparison. In his worst season as a pro, Kordell Stewart completed 50.2% and scored 7 touchdowns in 7 starts. In his best season, Tebow completed 46.5% of his passes with 12 touchdowns. Kordell Stewart has two seasons of 3,000+ passing yards, and in his best season he was an All-Pro,  completing 60.2% of his passes with 14 passing TD’s not including his rushing scores. Kordell Stewart, an All-Pro, spent his first few seasons playing running back because no one believed that he could be a NFL quarterback. Warren Moon of the Houston Oilers spent the early years of his career in the AFL because no one believed that a Black quarterback could lead a team. Moon went on to have a Hall of Fame career as a quarterback, and is one of the most prolific passers to ever play the game professionally. Though Tim Tebow is one of the most public figures in football over the last two years, he does not even compare favorably to an average quarterback in league much less a Hall of Fame guy. His pass completion percentage is the lowest since Akili Smith’s 44.2% for the Cincinnati Bengals in the year 2000.  Who is Akili Smith, you ask? Akili Smith is who Tim Tebow would be if he was black. Akili Smith is a quarterback that could not get his receivers the football, and was kicked out of the league in two years. He was woefully inadequate in the pocket and the Bengals removed him from the field despite taking him with their first pick. Unfortunately for Akili, he does not have Tebow’s skin color or personal convictions.

If Tim Tebow was not White, he would not be a backup quarterback in the NFL. He would be forced to play tight end or running back where he could utilize his skills and actually flourish. Tim is big and athletic. He is quick and decisive on his feet. But most of all, he is difficult to tackle. He has the talent to play in the National Football League, but he does not have the arm to do so. And, if Tim Tebow was Black, the rest of America would have realized that already.

What It Takes to Go Pro

26 Jul

*Nov 25 - 00:05*

By William Bixby

Getting to the professional level of any sport is a difficult, but attainable goal for many athletes. However, there are certain qualities, both physical and mental, that are necessary in order for that goal to be reached. The athlete must have the requisite amount of size and talent, they must have a good enough work ethic, and they must choose the right path to get to the highest level of their sport. Many athletes fail in one or more of these categories and thus never fulfill the accomplishments that their natural ability should afford them. Only through strict adherence to these guidelines can any athlete achieve their goals in sports.

This may seem fairly obvious, but in order for any person to become a professional athlete in any sport, they must have at least the minimum amount of natural talent and size in order to compete in the sport. Basketball players generally have to be well over six feet tall, strong, very coordinated, and quick on their feet. Football players sometimes have less height and coordination than basketball players, but have to be stronger and just as quick as basketball players. Baseball players are usually either average athletes and great hitters, or great athletes and average hitters. Their athleticism depends solely on their position (short stops and center fielders have to be athletic). Professional track athletes rarely get smaller than 5’7″ or taller than 6’4″, but their explosiveness is unrivaled in most sports. In general, the more size that an athlete has in any sport other than track, the less athleticism they have to possess. For example, a seven footer on the basketball court does not have to have a 40″ vertical leap or be extremely agile because his size gives him natural advantages, but a guy who is 5’7″ has to have blinding speed and quickness and an above average vertical to compete. In football, a man who weighs 300+ lbs. does not need to run as fast as the smaller guys who play skills positions. Having the appropriate size and talent is the first precursor to making the pros.

Being in close proximity to a former professional athlete or someone who had the talent to play professionally but failed, is the second prerequisite to playing sports at the highest level. Great amateur players usually have great role models. The media would have you believe that all of the professional athletes that you see on television come from single parent homes where their strict mother worked three jobs while putting her children through school. While the publicized cases of successful single parents who raised professional athletes are admirable, they are not the norm amongst professional athletes. Most athletes who are paid to play sports came from a two parent home where they had rules, role models, and direction. The structure that these players received in their homes produced a work ethic that fueled their improvement in their sport. According to Malcolm Gladwell, in order to become an expert in anything, you have to spend a minimum of 10,000 hours performing the act. A lucrative pro career is completely dependent on a strong work ethic which is instilled by good role models.

The final deciding factor in whether an athlete will play professionally is his path to the league. Talent by itself is not enough to play in the highest leagues unless you are a seminal talent like LeBron James or Alex Rodriguez. Most athletes have to follow the proper course in order to get the right exposure to their dream job. Most players have to play four years of high school ball, then play at least three years of college ball in order to be drafted by a franchise in football. In sports like baseball and basketball, the way that they choose candidates has completely changed. Whereas the conventional rule for MLB and NBA general managers regarding the drafting of talent was to find the most productive players from big conferences and draft them, management now leans towards finding physical gifts and intangibles in players instead of only using the players’ current production. The GM’s of today value potential over production. However, the path to the pros is still through the big programs. Division one athletes play on television more which gives them more exposure, they have better teammates which draws the attention of scouts, and they play against better competition which hones their skills. Any athlete that wants to go pro should consider their school carefully. Even when athletes enter a great Division one school, there are other factors that they must consider to be successful. Does the style of play at the school match their style of play? Rajon Rondo idled under Tubby Smith at Kentucky and almost missed his chance to play in the NBA. But, he has become one of the best young stars in the NBA under Doc Rivers. Tubby’s teams played slow. Doc preferred a faster pace. Some coaches stifle the play of their students. Some coaches have a reputation of sending overrated players into the next level. All these things must be considered when choosing the right path for an athlete.

If a player is talented enough to excel at sports and adheres to these basic tenets, he or she should eventually be paid for his or her profession. The path to the pros is not impossible, but it is filled with obstacles. Learn your craft, put in the hours to hone your skills, choose the right school for you, and you could become a pro.

Tom Brady is NOT Joe Montana

25 Jul

brady-montana

I fully respect New England Patriots owner Tom Kraft for lionizing his starting quarterback Tom Brady, but unfortunately his opinions are 100% inaccurate.  On August 31st, 2015 Kraft told NFL.com:

I think that Tommy, with all due respect, is better than Joe Montana.  I know that’s a leap, but I really think he might already be the best of all time. I watch how involved he is, how driven he is. He’s like Belichick, he’s into the details. And he’s got a skill that makes him so special; he can process all of it so quickly. And then, he’s just got that quality. Certain people have that sincerity. He’s a very genuine guy. People can relate to him. People can trust him.

 

I can imagine being around Brady for over a decade is amazing.  He’s obviously very physically gifted, he’s a tremendous leader, he’s certainly an extremely hard worker, he’s done things no other quarterback has ever done before, and most especially he’s made Kraft a hell of a lot of money.  It’s easy to see how Kraft could be biased towards his employee, but by no measure is Brady the best ever.  Sorry Mr. Kraft, sorry deluded Patriots fan, and sorry love struck bimbos who think Brady is oh so dreamy.  Just to be fair, here is a completely objective comparison of Brady to Montana.

 

Who can argue against perfection?

 

4-0 vs. 3-2*

This essentially ends the argument.  Montana has never lost a Super Bowl, has 3 MVPs in those games, and has never thrown an interception in his four appearances.  Essentially he rises to the occasion when the stakes are highest.  Brady is in rare company with his 3 championships, but 2 blemishes means he will never equal Joe.  This is no different than Kobe Bryant’s quest to equal MJ.  Michael Jordan never lost in the finals, yet Kobe has already lost twice.  No matter how many rings he wins, they will never be on the same plane.  What’s most glaring about Brady’s losses is that they are to the same person, Eli Manning.  Manning has played four less years than Brady, assuming he wins another Super Bowl and Brady does not, his record in the big game would be 3-0.  Would this not usurp Brady’s playoff accomplishments?  Think about that for a second.

 

It’s actually still possible Eli could surpass Brady

 

Stats

By standard measures Brady’s stats are far superior to Montana’s.  Career yards, TDs, completion percentage, QB rating, yards/game, and interceptions all favor Brady.  The same is true if one looks at single season yards, TDs, completions, and rating.  The problem with stats is that they don’t tell the whole story.  NFL rules make it exponentially easier to be successful in the passing game now versus in Montana’s time, so things are not comparable.  Furthermore teams pass on a much higher percentage of their downs than ever in NFL history.  From 1979-1990 Montana led the NFL in yards, TDs, completions, and completion percentage.  In Brady’s career he is only 4th in yards, 2nd in TDs, 4th in completions, and 9th in completion percentage.  So using raw numbers Brady has an advantage, but if one compares each to their contemporaries, Montana is superior, or at least not inferior.

 

 

Competition

Since his career began, Tom Brady has faced the following Hall of Fame defenders:  Darrell Green (who was a bit player and non-starter by Brady’s 2001 beginning), Bruce Smith, Rod Woodson, John Randle, and Deion Sanders.  All of these guys were shells of their former selves by the time they faced Brady.  Potential HOFs that are Brady’s contemporaries are Michael Strahan, Troy Palamalu, Ed Reed, Ray Lewis, and Demarcus Ware.  Montana has faced: Jack Ham, Alan Page, Mel Blount, Ted Hendricks, Jack Lambert, Randy White, Lee Roy, Selmon, Mike Haynes, Mike Singletary, Lawrence Taylor, Howie Long, Jack Youngblood, Dan Hampton, Elvin Bethea, Reggie White, Darrell Green (when he was actually good), Andre Tippett, Bruce Smith, Rod Woodson, Rickey Jackson, John Randle, Richard Dent, Deion Sanders, Chris Doleman, and Cortez Kennedy.  Granted Montana didn’t face all of these guys every year, it just shows that his path to offensive success was much more encumbered than Brady’s was.

 

Brady couldn’t defeat a 27th ranked NY Giants defense … not very strong competition

 

In a very rudimentary argument, if Brady is less successful than Montana in the clutch, isn’t the most statistically superior quarterback of all-time, and has faced clearly inferior defensive competition it’s pretty hard to call him the best ever.  There’s no denying he’s an all-time great, but Mr. Kraft’s superlatives are quite a bit unfounded.

*Editor’s note: Brady now has one more Super Bowl win bringing his record to 4-2.

NASCAR Drivers Are Not Athletes

30 Jun

nascar02

This guy looks like my next door neighbor, not like a star athlete.

Please stop calling NASCAR drivers athletes. NASCAR drivers are not physically gifted, they have no discerning physiological attributes, therefore they are not athletes. The only natural abilities that NASCAR drivers possess are a pure recklessness that in any other part of life would be completely unacceptable, and the ability to empty their bladders into their underwear which toddlers and senile adults can do equally as well. Driving a car at high speeds while turning left is not a talent. Anyone can learn to steer fast cars in one direction by simply putting in enough repetitions behind the wheel of a race car. NASCAR is a competition, not a sport, and the key differences between a sport and a competition lies in the training and the physical aspects of the activity.

The type of training that an athlete engages in is usually a good indicator of the type of activity in which they participate. Football players have stocky and muscular bodies because they have to take the punishment of continuous collisions during their games. They lift weights and consume exorbitant amounts of calories to maintain their weight and musculature. Basketball players are tall and lean which is conducive to the running and jumping that they must do on each play in their sport. Their height, natural speed and leaping ability, and coordination are necessary to being successful in their sport. Even baseball players have wide shoulders and powerful thighs, the body shape that allows them to drive the baseball for power. Real athletes can be differentiated between simply by observing their body shape. Consequently, the training regimens for those athletes consist of physical exercises, like weightlifting and cardio work, because their activity is physical.

nascar

In what other “sport” is a graying, chubby guy better than a twenty year old in peak condition?

The training that the NASCAR drivers receive does not build their bodies so that they can maximize the use of their inherent physical ability. These drivers do not need put on muscle to compete against their opponents, because their is very little physical exertion in the competition. Hence, there is no specific body type of a NASCAR driver. The training that NASCAR drivers receive hones their driving skills so that they can handle the stresses of accelerating and swerving at such high speeds for long periods of time. But, it does not help them to use their body more efficiently, because driving competitively is mostly mental. Any person with a driver’s license and a disregard for their life can feasibly drive a race car.

NASCAR does not involve any activity that is remotely athletic. The drivers do not run miles a day in order to keep their bodies at peak physical condition. They do not lift weights in order to strengthen their bodies, because the condition of their body has no effect on the outcome of their race. Though NASCAR drivers endure stresses on their bodies that many athletes never experience in their respective sports, that does not make racing cars comparable to real sports. It is true that NASCAR drivers often lose 3-8 pounds during a race, but the weight is not lost due to physical exertion. It is due to the extreme heat that is produced by the expensive racing machines on concrete tracks. The weight that drivers lose while driving is nothing more than extensive in-car sauna treatments. Driving race cars professionally is difficult, but it is not in any way an athletic endeavor. When training does not hone natural abilities, then the person who is training is simply learning a skill for competition, not playing a sport. Athletes are more physically gifted than the normal population. They are noticeably bigger, faster, and more coordinated than everyone else. NASCAR drivers do not possess any special gifts with which they are born. They are just regular people that love cars and speed.

Race car drivers are not athletes. They are glorified valets and get-away drivers. Any idiot with a driver’s license and a death wish can drive a car irresponsibly fast. People that commute to work daily have the same set of skills that NASCAR drivers have, decent reflexes, spatial reasoning, and the ability to judge distances accurately. Getting behind the wheel at a NASCAR event takes skills, not athleticism, so stop comparing them to real athletes.

 

*Seriously, if a girl can play a man’s sport just as well as the other men, then it is not a sport.

*Sexist statement of the month.