Should NFL Players Be Penalized for “Mock Tebowing?”: A Fan’s Perspective

Before NFL defensive players gleefully drop to one knee in celebration after sacking Denver Broncos’ Quarterback Tim Tebow, they should consider precisely WHO they are mocking by doing it.

It isn’t #15 for the Denver Broncos.

It’s God.

It’s one thing for “normal” people to “Tebow” as some sort of strange photo-snapping internet sensation. But “Tebowing” takes on an entirely new meaning when opposing athletes, like the Detroit Lions’ Stephen Tulloch and New England’s Vince Wilfork, go down on one knee to taunt a man of Christian faith.

It’s classless. It’s mocking. And it should warrant at least a 15-yard-automatic-first-down unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

Many question whether Tim Tebow is a “Super Bowl quarterback.” (I personally have never seen the official checklist, but, apparently, Tebow should be thrown out of the league because he doesn’t meet any of the criteria.) No one, however, can question Tebow’s passionate faith in Jesus Christ. He expresses it when he speaks, when he tweets and when he kneels.

Kneeling has always represented an act of humility before God. Most would agree that is precisely why Tebow does it. When he hits a knee, even in a swarm of people on the sidelines, it looks like an almost-too-personal-for-TV moment. Well-meaning pats on the back by teammates seem ill-timed and invasive, as if they interrupt a special time between Father and son.

So, when defensive players like Wilfork say, “Yeah, I ‘Tebowed’… That’s what he does; he put it out there. I wanted to steal it. I don’t think he’ll mind, just for one play,” it only proves that the NFL is full of arrogant idiots who, quite simply, do not understand who Tim Tebow is or what he represents.

“Steal it?” This isn’t an Aaron Rogers State Farm commercial. Tim Tebow doesn’t “Tebow.” He kneels humbly before God. It isn’t an in-your-face “touchdown dance.” It represents a wordless demonstration of humility. Imitating the gesture after a sack is an affront, not to Tim Tebow, but to God. And that, to many, is worse than stomping another player or hitting a passer after he throws the ball.

It’s true. Only God can know what’s in a person’s heart. But, with players like Wilfork and Tullock, fans and officials can make a pretty good guess about what is going on in theirs. You know Mock Tebowing when you see it. It isn’t a spur-of-the-moment celebration and it isn’t a newly discovered need to pray. It is planned mockery and designed specifically to taunt.

So, come on, Roger Goodell. Issue a taunting rule against Mock Tebowing. Let the officials start throwing the flags. And let the players involved start writing the checks – preferably to Tim Tebow’s Foundation building a children’s hospital in the Philippines. Mock Tebowing is not only unsportsmanlike, it’s ungodly.

And even if the perpetrators don’t have a relationship with God, they can show a little respect for those who do.

People also view

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *