The Denver Broncos have one player on their football team and that player is the quarterback, Tim Tebow. He is the only Bronco on the field, and, as you may have noticed, he is also the head coach, the offensive and defensive coordinator, and the special teams coach. Tebow runs, blocks, sacks, scrambles, stunts, kicks, covers, calls plays, and passes, to himself. At least, that's the impression I got after checking up on the Denver press this week.
It is all Tebow all the time out in Colorado, which I guess should be expected after his miraculous series of performances that helped propel the Broncos from 1-4 to AFC West champs. However, if his latest performances are any indication of the future, Tebow Time may be borrowed. The Broncos were 0-3 in their backing in to a divisional title, and the Golden Child couldn't come to the rescue, so their backup, Brady Quinn is on standby should he falter.
What began with a billboard could come crashing down this week when the Pittburgh Steelers limp into Mile High this afternoon. John Elway, now Denver's Vice President of Football, whose first playoff game as Broncos QB came 28 years ago against the Steelers, urged Tebow to "pull the trigger", to be more aggressive, an alternative to his safe style of play.
That could play into the hands of Pittsburgh's dominating defense, a core that features strong safety Troy Polamalu and the controversial smash-mouth linebacker, James Harrison, and gave up fewer points per game than any other NFL team this season. Despite losing running back Rashard Mendenhall, who tore his ACL last week against the Browns in Cleveland a week ago, Pittsburgh can lean on Ben Roethlisberger's shaky ankle and his stellar core of wide receivers to get by a Denver team that is mediocre at best. If Big Ben sits, then all bets are off.
Pittsburgh are a powerhouse with a head coach in Mike Tomlin who is 55-25 in his first five seasons, while the Steelers have two Super Bowl rings in three appearances since 2005. However, with a series of key injuries, their stretch run to Indianapolis will be uphill.
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Pre-game: Before we begin I'd like to ask all Guardian readers to form a circle join all in a little prayer.
Prayer over, and time for a little pre-game entertainment, a Patrick Conway creation from a Steeler die-hard.