I saw a brief clip of Tim Tebow running in the rain the other day, shirtless. His shoulders looked like the Himalayas. His chest was so broad you could have put a picture of a local insurance agent on it and used it for a roadside billboard. The man looked nothing like any quarterback I've ever seen, anywhere.
Which, of course, is the whole deal with Tebow. He's really not a quarterback, but both Tebow and a lot of other people insist on treating him like one.
The latest is Chip Kelly, head coach of the Eagles and the inventor of everyone's favorite parlor game these days. It's called "What The Hell Is Chip Kelly Thinking?", and it proceeds from one of two premises:
1. Chip Kelly is way smarter than the rest of us, so shut up already about what he's thinking.
2. Chip Kelly is so smart he tends to outthink himself, which is why he signed one quarterback who's broken all the time (Sam Bradford) and another who's really not a quarterback (Tebow) but who, because he's Tebow, will bring media hellfire to rain on the Eagles for as long as he's there.
Which is to say: Chip Kelly is crazier than ten bedbugs. Or, again, he's a flipping genius.
I've got a feeling it's the latter more than the former, although what mad genius was behind signing Sam Bradford is beyond my feeble powers to comprehend. He arrived hurt and he's gonna get hurt again, because that's just what he does. So then you've got Mark Sanchez and you've got Tebow, who, again, isn't really a quarterback -- although maybe that's precisely why Kelly signed him.
Here's a thought: Maybe Kelly really is a mad scientist. Which means, this very moment, he's got Tebow stretched out on a table in some dank castle keep, and he's cackling madly and mumbling to himself the way mad scientists do.
"He'll be my greatest creation!" Dr. Chip raves, "Voila: The NFL's first Q-back! A quarterback who lines up in the gun and sometimes will take direct snaps and sometimes will go in motion and sometimes will run seam routes! And, sometimes, especially in the red zone, he takes handoffs and either runs at the goal line or executes that jump-pass thing he did in college!"
Then he cackles madly again and Igor hits the switch and, OK, enough with the Frankenstein meme.
Instead, let's consider that Kelly might actually be planning on using Tebow as some sort of elaborate hybrid. His skill set -- and he has one -- certainly seems to lean that way. I've always maintained that he's more a Gronkowski-like hybrid tight end than a quarterback, and that's where his future lies if he has one. You move him around, you line him up in various places, you use what he has to your best advantage.
He's never going to be your classic pocket passer, or any kind of passer, really. That's fairly well established. But you can use him in that role in certain situations, and maybe that's what Kelly envisions.
Then again, maybe there's nothing more to it than what Sanchez said the other day.
"Another guy to throw (while Bradford heals)," was Sanchez' verdict.
Oh, that Chip Kelly. Always thinkin'.