Saturday, December 17, 2011
Steamboat Pilot & Today sports reporter and photographer Joel Reichenberger can be reached at 871-4253 or jreichenberger@SteamboatToday.com.
Find more columns by Joel here.
Steamboat Springs I was a Denver Broncos fan pre-Tim Tebow, but my favorite part of the Tebow mania that’s swept the nation isn’t what it has done for Denver’s record.
It’s not even that Tebow got mentioned in a Rick Perry debate speech.
My favorite part about it is the way Tebow has handled the whole thing, the way he’s been more unflappable in post-game interviews than he has in fourth quarters.
There’s been no better example than Denver’s Nov. 18 Thursday Night Football win against the Jets. The crew working the game — famous NFLers Michael Irvin, Deion Sanders and Marshall Faulk — were flat-out rude when questioning Tebow, who exuded nothing but class.
Yeah, Tebow talked about his teammates, but he’s not the only NFL player classy enough to share the spotlight.
He may be the only NFL player classy enough not to choke out Sanders, who straight up asked Tebow why people hated him. “Is it your faith or your throwing motion?”
Of course, Tebow didn’t choke anyone out, and he wasn’t even a little bit rude. He was genuinely polite and nice.
Since Tebow mania started, I haven’t seen an interview with him that didn’t have at least some question that hinged on the idea that he’s a horrible quarterback who’s getting lucky.
Who can sit there and absorb that over and over again without snapping back?
I know I couldn’t. Sometimes, I feel like I can’t dress myself and drive to work without mentally rubbing someone’s nose in it.
I’m sure I could smile and nod through a few questions, but when my skills became a national joke? No, I wouldn’t handle that well, especially not while those skills were helping my team be so successful.
Tebow answered Irvin’s question that night the way he’s answered it every other time it’s been asked: with class.
He said he learned “to not worry about what I can’t control. What I can control is my attitude, my effort and my focus every single day.”
There’s a lot to love in all of this, but my favorite part is classy moves like that. I’ll be positively happy if Denver today again pulls off the unfathomable. I’ll be positively elated to watch the post-game interview.