Tim Tebow, a ‘gamer,’ about to play in games

Tim Tebow has impressed in training camp, but his coaches want to know how he’ll handle live game conditions. Mitchell Leff/Getty Images
  • Phil Sheridan, ESPN Staff Writer

PHILADELPHIA — Tim Tebow is a “gamer,” in the words of Eagles offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur. By that, he means they’ll need to see Tebow play in preseason games to get a real feel for what he can do.

“I can see Tim zone-reading something, pulling it, and then the whistle sort of gets blown here and he might run a guy over [if the whistle wasn’t blown],” Shurmur said Wednesday. “So that kind of uncontrolled-type stuff. We could run a naked [bootleg] and get [Tebow] out on the perimeter with a guy hanging off him and making a throw. You know, all that type of stuff that you say, ‘Wow, that was really a terrific, athletic play.’ That kind of stuff.”

In practice, Tebow takes off and runs with the ball far more than any of the other quarterbacks. It isn’t clear whether that’s just his decision, or whether the coaches are calling more plays for him that are designed for the quarterback to run. It makes sense that the Eagles would avoid having Sam Bradford running around on his surgically repaired knee, but Tebow runs it more than Mark Sanchez or Matt Barkley as well.

“He’s doing a great job,” said wide receiver Riley Cooper, who played with Tebow at Florida. “He’s one of the toughest players I’ve ever played with. If nothing’s there, he can tuck the ball and run with it. He’s tough to get down. I know what he’s capable of. He’s a heck of a quarterback, a heck of a teammate.”

There has been speculation that coach Chip Kelly signed Tebow with the idea of using him in certain offensive packages, or as a weapon in two-point conversions. Shurmur didn’t think there was much chance of springing Tebow on an unsuspecting NFL.

“I think there’s pretty good evidence of what Tim [does],” Shurmur said. “He’s been doing this for a long time.”

Shurmur said he was watching the SEC channel a couple of nights ago and found a Florida-Michigan bowl game.

“Tim got the crap knocked out of him,” Shurmur said, “but he was making plays and throwing it to Percy Harvin and there was all this crazy stuff where it looks like it shouldn’t work and all of a sudden they score a touchdown. What Tim can do is on tape. I don’t know if we’re hiding anything.”

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One Response to “Tim Tebow, a ‘gamer,’ about to play in games”

  1. ck says:

    Like that Riley Cooper is stating facts and happy to see that he is defending his loyal team mate Tebow even if he has proven himself to be a WINNER OVER AND OVER AGAIN!!! GO RILEY & TEBOW!!

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