Big News For Tim TebowENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The debate over Tim Tebows worthiness as an NFLquarterback will undeniably continue in the offseason.Whats not in doubt is his status as the Denver Broncos starter.The team sought to curb the circus thats sure to surround Tebow over the nextseveral months by declaring him the incumbent at a season-ending newsconference Monday."Well, I think Tims earned the right to be the starting quarterback going intotraining camp next year," Broncos boss John Elway declared at the beginning ofa 40-minute news conference in which 24 of the 47 questions were about Tebow."I think he made some good strides this year," Elway said. "He obviously playedvery well against Pittsburgh and played very well in a lot of football games."And exceedingly poorly in plenty of others.Thats why Elway, a Hall of Famer who rejoined the team a year ago as chief offootball operations, has pledged to personally work with Tebow this offseason topolish his passing game and help him become a better quarterback.He has a willing pupil in Tebow, who said his offseason goal was "to work prettyhard and try to get a lot better."Elway said he wants to "help Tim in every way I can, to be able to improvethrough what I learned."And that was this: Mobility is great, but to compete for a championship, you haveto become a pocket passer. Thats what Elway learned late in his career, which
he capped with back-to-back Super Bowl titles after losing the big game threetimes."Hopefully, I can teach him what I learned over my 16-year career," Elway said,"to be able to tell him what I learned in Year 10, hopefully get that to him in year 3or 4."The Broncos, like everyone else, are looking for that franchise quarterback "andwere so hopeful that Tims that guy. Obviously, we have some work to do and heknows that, too."Tebow took over a 1-4 team in October and guided the Broncos to their firstplayoff berth since 2005. But the clunky dual-threat quarterback completed just46.5 percent of his passes in the regular season and 40.4 percent in the playoffswhile compiling an 8-5 overall record that included five second-half comebacks.His 80-yard TD toss on the first play of overtime beat Pittsburgh in the wild-cardround and capped his best performance as a pro.Then, he had the worst completion percentage – 34 – in a playoff game since1998 in a 35-point loss at New England on Saturday night in a game that showedhow far both he and the Broncos have yet to go.Sticking with Tebow as the starter doesnt mean the Broncos wont be adding aquarterback or two in the offseason either through the draft or free agency."Well, right now as we look at it, weve got two quarterbacks under contract,"Elway said, noting that practice squad QB Adam Weber signed a futurescontract. "So, weve obviously got to be in the market to find some morequarterbacks."Coach John Fox didnt rule out the return of Brady Quinn, who hasnt taken asingle snap in his two seasons in Denver.
Selling a veteran quarterback on Denver might be difficult."Now, I think that anybody that comes in, a free agent, no matter what position, isgoing to believe theyre going to come in and have a chance to compete," Elwaysaid. "Thats the thing. Anybody that comes in here, when we start training camp,is going to be competing for jobs. Obviously, with Tims reputation, if the guy isafraid to come in here and compete for that job, then maybe its not the rightguy."With Tebow entering his first camp as the unquestioned starter, its likely theBroncos will seek out a veteran backup via free agency, but Elway said he wasntsure whether the team would look at QBs who are stylistically similar to Tebow.Tebows growth was stunted by the NFL lockout and Kyle Ortons status as thestarter through training camp and the first month of the season.Despite winning seven of his first eight starts, the Broncos were unbalancedunder Tebow. They had the leagues best ground game but were ranked 31st inthe 32-team league in passing."So, those are the strides that were going to have to make for us to be theoffensive football team that we want to be," Elway said. "And so thats why werelooking forward to this offseason and we know what kind of mentality Timmy has,hes a great worker and I know hell work his tail off this offseason. ... I think hewill make those improvements."Fox said he wasnt worried that Tebows many off-the-field commitments woulddetract from working on his faulty footwork and messy mechanics. He said all theplayers deserve a break from football.He also said the read-option he installed midseason to capitalize on Tebowsunique skills served as a bridge to his becoming a conventional quarterback butmight remain a part of the Broncos arsenal in 2012.
The Broncos brass like the way Tebow handled pressure in his first season asthe starter. Elway said what he went through in his career in this quarterback-crazed town was nothing compared to what Tebow has to endure.Elway said his scrutiny was mostly local, "but when you look at Tim Tebow, whathe went through was nationally based or maybe even worldwide-based. I mean,you talk about people Tebowing outside the Eiffel Tower, you know, that kind oftells you."Still, Elway said Tebow was unaffected by all the attention.As for Elway, he said he enjoyed his first year as an NFL executive even as hewas lambasted on Twitter by Tebows legion of fans after showing tepidenthusiasm for the second-year quarterback early on."Yeah, I want to keep doing it, no question," Elway said. "Theres no question, wehad some tough situations this year, obviously with the quarterback situation,where we were coming into camp, even coming out of camp, but I think for themost part I enjoyed that."He said what hes proudest about "is the bandwagon is now full again. That thingwas pretty empty last year."The Broncos could lose the architect of Tebows game plans if offensivecoordinator Mike McCoy leaves. He interviewed for the Miami Dolphins headcoaching vacancy Monday and will also interview with the Oakland Raiders, aswill Denver defensive coordinator Dennis Allen.Calling the Broncos "a work in progress," Fox said his message to his players attheir final team meeting Sunday was that there will be plenty of changes in 2012because "we would do whatever it takes to win the big boy championship, notjust the AFC West championship."
"They understand the business side of it and the offseason means were in thebusiness side of football," Fox said. "Well march forward."Behind Tebow.More Insight on Tim Tebow:Through The Eyes By Tim Tebow