Annapolis Correspondent, White Cover Magazine
It’s easy for Americans to assume that almost any of them could play in the CFL. It’s their Grapefruit League, their McDonald’s foam pit, or their cousin who failed out of massage school.
So, it would be simple to assume that if Tim Tebow could play quarterback anywhere, it would be the CFL. Right?
Not according to Edmonton Eskimos — and NFL — legend Warren Moon.
“You have to be able to throw the ball up there, if anything. They throw the ball a lot,” he told KILT-AM radio station in Houston (according to ESPN.com). “If you can’t throw the football, it doesn’t matter where you play quarterback… You have to be able to throw it. That’s his biggest problem, just being able to complete passes, be an accurate passer. I think he’s a really good athlete playing the position, but I don’t think that’s enough sometimes.”
Moon ain’t the first guy to blast Tebow or deny his chances of success north of the 49th.
“The more Tebow throws, the worse it is for him and his team,” wrote ESPN’s AFC East blogger James Walker. “An NFL quarterback may need to throw 30 times a game to be successful. A CFL or Arena Football League quarterback may need to throw 40 to 60 times per game. It’s hard to imagine Tebow thriving in that scenario, even against easier competition.
“Tebow would be wise to wait as long as possible for his next NFL shot. Going to the CFL right now would be a major risk. If Tebow fails in Canada, as Moon predicts, he may never make it back to the league where he won a playoff game as quarterback of the Denver Broncos.”
And, just to remind you that Canadians were already all over this first, here’s Yahoo! Sports Canada’s Andrew Bucholtz of the site’s 55 Yard Line:
“Simply put, Tim Tebow is a terrible quarterback. His career NFL completion percentage is just 47.9 per cent, and the 75.0 per cent mark he’s notched this year is incredibly deceptive, as he’s only thrown eight passes. Heck, even Pro Football Reference lists him as a fullback/tight end this year, which many of us would argue would be a better position for him. Yes, many quarterbacks who haven’t found great success south of the border have gone on to shine in the CFL, and that has some talking up Tebow as perhaps the next in that line. The crucial difference, though? Those guys were effective passers.
“With three downs, a bigger field and expanded motion, the Canadian game is even more passing-focused. Yes, some dual-threat quarterbacks have had success up north, most notably Damon Allen (Warren Moon, sometimes cited as an example there, didn’t actually run very much in the CFL), but Allen was always quite capable in the passing game too. He was the CFL’s leader in career passing yards until Anthony Calvillo broke his record in 2011, and his 56.4 per cent career completion mark (much of which was recorded in an era that emphasized deep, lower-percentage throws more than today’s game) makes Tebow’s look like chopped liver by comparison.
“Of course, it’s highly unlikely Tebow would come north anyway. There’s so much bizarre, ESPN-fueled hype about him (which has been parodied in literature and musicals) that it’s quite probable some other NFL team will pick him up if New York lets him go. Even if they don’t, another U.S. based league like the UFL or the AFL will make a run at him and offer him way more money (and a chance to start) than the CFL could. His game might be a better fit in those leagues, too; it certainly isn’t suited for the CFL. That’s why it’s so bizarre that teams keep putting him on a negotiation list. Tebow likely isn’t coming north, and he wouldn’t be any good as a quarterback if he did. The “Tim Tebow to the CFL!” discussion’s going to continue unabated, of course, but it’s much more of a joke than a serious possibility. However, the real joke would be if we ever saw a CFL team try to make Tebow into a starting quarterback. He can’t pass, and last time we checked, that was a rather important element of the quarterback’s job.”