While I am a Colorado girl (and, even rarer, a Colorado native), I confess I’ve never been much of a Denver Broncos fan.
Sure, I’ve been to a Broncos game or two (none within the last two decades, however) and casually watched them at home. I vaguely remember watching them lose in Super Bowls when I was a kid – get home from skiing and go to one of the neighbor’s houses for a Super Bowl party to watch them fail and fail again. I also remember them winning their two Super Bowls when I was in early adolescence (but still didn’t much care).
I’ve always been more of a hockey girl. The Colorado Avalanche was the first local sports team I fell in love with. I always had a casual flirtation with the Colorado Rockies, which developed into something stronger in 2007 … when the casual fandom of the Boston Red Sox I acquired in college disappeared completely in favor of my hometown team. And the Denver Nuggets (or other myriad professional lacrosse/soccer/indoor football teams)? Meh.
But Denver (and Colorado and really, the vast majority of this “Western mountain region”) is Broncos territory, and I’ve never been a part of it.
Until now. Sort of.
Football is a sport I can watch without really knowing what’s going on. I typically don’t like watching a sport unless I know what’s going on. Hockey, baseball … easy. Basketball I get lost and don’t even get me started with soccer. But football … football I can watch with only the vaguest clue of what’s going on. (Granted, it might be more of a vague clue, but you’re going to have to ask the husband if that’s true.)
The Broncos have become a talked about team because of their fairly polarizing quarterback, Tim Tebow. If you’re familiar with sports, you probably already know who he is. If not, well, a friend linked to this Gawker article on facebook, which does a decent job of explaining it.
In short: highly religious quarterback for the Broncos; played college at Florida; famous for “Tebowing” (getting down on one knee and praying while other crap goes on around him), outspoken pro-life advocate, etc. Football people will tell you he’s not all that good, due to crappy throwing mechanics with his arm (kind of important if you’re a QUARTERBACK), but from what this extremely casual Broncos/football fan can see, he’s been good at helping his team believe and bringing them together, something the Broncos have needed for a while.
This has been called the worst article about Tebow ever written. I would agree … if it were meant as an actual article and not just a blog/opinion piece. If you read the comments, people think the author is advocating Tim Tebow for president; I didn’t get that. I interpreted Matthew Dowd’s piece as using Tebow, and the way he leads the Broncos, as an example as what to look for in our country’s next leader*. I can admit that perhaps Dowd went about his point the wrong way, but I don’t disagree with his point, let’s just put it that way.
Yet if that’s the worst article written about Tim Tebow, ESPN’s Rick Reilly might have the penned the best. True, Reilly has made a career about writing either feel-good pieces like this or snark. However, in a world where the vast, vast majority of stories about athletes outside of athletics are about athletes doing bad, bad things (rape, murder, etc.), it’s nice to hear about one who puts things outside the realm of sports higher than him. That yes, it is truly just a game when it comes down to it.
I partially wish that Tebow (and others) could do the same without having religion so present, as religion can be (and is) so polarizing.
And I really wish, hope and pray that Tebow continues to live by this example and not fall to the temptation and bad press that so many of his peers have.
*My political thoughts are … definitely for another time. Probably when I get sick of stuff come campaign season.