MIAMI GARDENS, FL - OCTOBER 23: Tim Tebow #15 of the Denver Broncos heads off the field after the game against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on October 23, 2011 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Tim Tebow is the cat inside Schrodinger's box, otherwise known as John Fox's offense.
Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow is a great example of Schrodinger's cat. If one is not familiar with the thought experiment, it sort of goes like this: there's a cat inside of a closed box. Also inside is a Geiger counter with a small amount of radioactive material. Should the radioactive material decay, it will eventually send a hammer down to break a vial of acid. The cat does.
But we don't know whether the car is alive or dead until we open the box. There is an equal chance of either state happening, but we need to disturb the closed system. After one start by Tim Tebow under John Fox, we need to see that closed system disturbed.
Let's replace the actors in this scenario. Tebow is the cat inside the box. The radioactive material-acid combination is, for lack of a better term, the ability to not be a good NFL quarterback. The box is an offense John Fox wants Tim Tebow to adapt to over the rest of the season.
But after Sunday, we still haven't opened the box to see if Tebow can be an NFL quarterback. The play calling by offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and John Fox led much to be desired. At one point the Broncos had run 12 straight run plays on first down and done little as a result of that. On the 13th try, there was finally a pass play--until it was called back by a penalty. Nullified. Back to the run again for the 13th time.
As Sports Illustrated's Jim Trotter pointed out, Tebow was 4-of-14 for 40 yards over the first 55 minutes of the game. It looked worse earlier when Tebow had just three completions for 25 yards and a net of two passing yards. It hurts when the Dolphins had few troubles sacking Tebow throughout the day.
But then Tebow Time came, going 9-of-13 for 121 yards and two touchdown passes. He wound up throwing those scores over the final 2:44 (and he did have help from the Dolphins' failed two point conversion earlier and the onside kick recovery after his first touchdown). It was his will to win showing itself then, right?
Tebow Time, the way it is constituted now, is no way to win games. The Dolphins are a bad team, not as bad as the Indianapolis Colts, but still bad. Would this be possible against the Lions next week? Highly unlikely. The Lions' offense is more dynamic with Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson one of the top quarterback-receiver threats in the league. That changes if Stafford's leg injury is serious, but it doesn't appear to be on Monday morning.
This game against the Lions would be a great time to open up that box and find out if Tebow is "dead" as an NFL quarterback or not. He's going up against the No. 7 pass defense and he shouldn't be coddled against a solid team. Call some screen passes for Tebow and start playing to his strengths.
Or maybe Fox just wants to push a closed box to the side after this season and never truly wants to know what he has with Tebow. Push the box aside, Fox is condemning Tebow as a Broncos. Open that box and Fox might just find a quarterback who isn't dead, who's overcome the odds. It's not the first time Tebow's done it.