Broncos wisely unleash Tebow, elite 8 is next |

Broncos wisely unleash Tebow, elite 8 is next

Sports Geek
Jeff Sauer
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Jeff Sauer

Give Denver offensive coordinator Mike McCoy a game ball.

McCoy had the notoriously stingy Steelers defense off balance for the better part of Sunday afternoon, and the Broncos stood toe to toe with the defending AFC champion, eventually out-playing them en route to a berth in the divisional semifinals.

There was a guy named Tebow that played a small part as well.

The Broncos did exactly what they needed to do – by finally unleashing Tebow at the right time, against the right team, and the Broncos quarterback racked up 316 yards and two touchdowns through the air in his best NFL performance to date.

Now, Tebow and the triple-threat option are capable of picking apart opposing defenses that gamble on crowding the line of scrimmage to stop the Broncos explosive running game.

And Bill Belichick’s job just became much tougher this week.

Perhaps some of Tebow’s inspiration came from the prodding of John Elway, who told his quarterback to just “sling it” earlier in the week, but Elway doesn’t draw up the Xs and Os.

That would be McCoy.

The Broncos now move on to face Belichick and the New England Patriots this week, where they are already 13-point underdogs.

And while Denver’s strange roller-coaster ride could end in Massachusetts, one cannot knock the entertainment value the Broncos have provided their followers this season.

For the past 12 weeks, armchair quarterbacks have crawled out of the woodwork to gather around the water cooler and opine about the Broncos – some of it good, some of it bad, and most of it somewhat perplexing.

Disregard the three-game skid at the end of the regular season for a moment, and give the Broncos some credit, if you’re a fan or not. They finally brought back some long-awaited football enthusiasm to the Rocky Mountains.

Whether the topic of conversation hinged on Tim Tebow’s quarterbacking skills or his faith, or Denver’s vastly improved defense and league-leading rushing attack, there’s no denying the fact – the Broncos finally became relevant again.

Fans have a tendency to get excited about their teams when every major media outlet in the country is covering them 24/7.

And when they end six-year playoff droughts.

The madness continues on Saturday. Kickoff is at 6 p.m. Mountain time.

Sharing the ball: A new concept in professional basketball

The Nuggets ball-sharing philosophy is working just fine, thank you.

They say you can’t win an NBA title without a superstar. In fact, much was made of the fact that the Mavericks won a title with only one last year – Dirk Nowitzki.

But I do remember the Detroit Pistons of 2004, and they didn’t have a legit “go-to guy” on their roster, much like this year’s version of the Nuggets.

The Pistons spread the wealth offensively, played relentless defense, and worked harder and smarter than their opponents. They also out-hustled and destroyed a Lakers team in the Finals that featured four future Hall of Famers.

In essence, they were unselfish.

Winning a title this way is not the norm, but the 2004 Pistons proved that it can be done.

It’s all in the name

I did a complete double take the other night when I heard the Nuggets PA announcer say: “Metta World Peace now checking into the game for the Los Angeles Lakers.”


Its official – Ron Artest is crazier than a crack house rat.

Jeff Sauer is a longtime western Colorado resident and former Roaring Fork Valley resident. He can be reached at

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