Right when we thought we had seen the last of the Tim Tebow hype train, the man decides to mount a comeback. But not as a quarterback—as a tight end. That, combined with his time away from the game, will put Tebow in the conversation for Comeback Player of the Year (COPY).
The criteria are not very demanding or specific. All a player must do is be someone “who shows perseverance in overcoming adversity from not being able to play the previous season.”
So, basically, anyone who did not play the previous season or did not play well has a shot at winning the COPY. It is often someone that overcomes an injury like Alex Smith last season and usually goes to someone who lost the previous season to an injury. It could also be someone whose career is on a downward trend, like Ryan Tannehill the year before.
Since Tebow has been out of the NFL for six seasons, he certainly falls under the general description of an eligible player. But does he have a shot?
"[Tim Tebow] has not played a snap in a regular season game since 2012… He could be awesome at tight end at the age of 33 playing the position in the NFL for the first time… But all we have to work on is what we know and what we know is nothing."
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) May 10, 2021
Tim Tebow, Tight End, Jacksonville Jaguars
Tebow’s story will have all the elements a good CPOY candidate needs. His lengthy absence from the game alone is enough. But throw in learning a new position that he has never played before, and he is a longshot just to make the roster.
Assuming he does, he will need to play well enough compared to guys that have played the position their entire careers to get any game-time. Then there is the fact that he is on a team that went 1-15 last season, hired a rookie NFL head coach (who had been retired), and will be starting a rookie quarterback.
But CPOY candidates are about more than just production. Yes, players must play well, but the journey is a significant factor as well. Take Alex Smith and his journey. His injury was horrific and should have been a career-ender. But after an insane number of surgeries, he made it back.
While he did not play much last season and did not always play well, the fact that he played was enough.
Now, Tebow’s circumstances cannot compare to Smith’s, of course. But his journey will matter. He stuck to his guns and tried to make it as a quarterback, despite his many critics, and failed. Six years later, he decides to try it again—but at a different position.
You know– because comebacks are not hard enough.
Sports Betting Recommendation
|Odds On NFL Comeback Player of the Year In 2021||DraftKings Sportsbook Promo Code & App Review||BetRivers|
|Odell Beckham Jr.||+2500||+2500|
All the criteria are there. If Tebow can overcome the insurmountable obstacles in his and make the final roster, he might have a shot.
Urban Meyer will want to get the ball out of Lawrence’s hands as quickly as possible. That will likely mean lots of check-downs to his running back or possibly to a big tight end he can easily see over the middle. If Tebow can be that guy, there is a slight chance he could play his way into contention.
However, the competition is going to be way too tough this year.
CPOY candidates that get the chance to play early and enough and play well will be first on everyone’s list when it comes time to vote. This season, there will be quite a few guys that will play early and enough. They are going to generate the kind of stats it takes to warrant receiving CPOY honors.
Can we honestly see Tim Tebow, tight end, outperforming Dak Prescott, Christian McCaffrey, Nick Bosa, Saquon Barkley, Joe Burrow, Carson Wentz, or Julio Jones? Maybe in an alternate universe, but not in this one.
So—does that mean he is not worth betting on to win CPOY? Not exactly.
Tebow is the type of person that will put in the work it takes to make the roster. If he produces in the limited time you know Urban Myer will give him, he might actually earn more time. Assuming things go well, he could have a good season.
To win, he will need to have a great one while hoping some (all) of the other candidates flop. Is he worth betting on? When you consider a $1 bet can win you $100 or a $10 bet a $1000? Yeah, he is worth a bet—just not much of one.
Then again, Tebow is in pretty tight with the ‘Man Upstairs,’ and miracles do happen…