Tim Tebow On Point During Thursday’s Session
Tim Tebow had himself a day.
The sequence that defined it came towards the end of Thursday’s training session with the lefty manning the third team. It started with an on-point fling to Mike Johnson down the seam, followed by a strong out throw that Quron Pratt hauled in along the right sideline. The capper was a deep pass down the left side that dropped right into the arms of running back Raheem Mostert, who shook loose on a wheel route.
“I’m just supposed to haul,” said the speedy rookie out of Purdue, “and Tebow hit me right at the perfect spot.
“He’s improving each and every day. He’s out here getting work after practice, I see that all the time. He’s really working on his craft and his technique and his throwing ability.”
Tebow says he has noticed a bump in his accuracy compared to the spring, and attributes that to the coaching he’s getting from the Eagles staff, the work he’s put in with throwing instructors Tom House and Adam Dedeaux this offseason, and his growing familiarity with Chip Kelly‘s system.
“I feel like I’m trying to get this offense down a little bit better every day, play a little bit faster, go through my reads just a little bit quicker and get the ball into the hands of the playmakers; that’s what this offense is all about,” he said.
Tebow is currently competing with Matt Barkley for the No. 3 quarterback spot. Kelly said he has seem “big improvement” in Barkley, who is certainly the more natural thrower of the two. Tebow’s edge lies in his legs.
The coaches have been calling a bunch of zone read plays for the 27-year-old, and it’s common to see him pull the ball and take off during practice. (When he did this in front of the fans at Lincoln Financial Field Tuesday, it drew a big ovation.)
“I enjoy doing that. I think it’s fun, it’s something I’ve done a lot of,” said Tebow of the zone read. “And I think it can sometimes make defenses play a little bit slower so I think it gives the offense opportunity to play in space, and that’s a good thing.”
Kelly was asked if Tebow is someone that can be used in creative ways on game days.
“Yeah, Tim obviously has a lot of skills that other quarterbacks don’t have because of his ability to run the football,” said Kelly, “but we have not delved into any of that.
“We have not spent any time as an offensive staff looking at, ‘Hey, how do we do this or what can we do in terms of working out how the final roster is going to express itself?’”
The head coach noted that the big test for Tebow, Barkley and the rest of the quarterbacks will come during the preseason games when the red jerseys come off and action is live. There is plenty of offseason to go before the roster is finalized. All that can be said with confidence is that on this day, Tebow stood out, and did so because of what he accomplished with his arm.