Is Tim Tebow’s Future as the Starting Quarterback for the Denver Bronco’s Secure?
Plus an Interview via Satellite with
San Francisco 49ers Linebacker Patrick Willis
NEW YORK (Nov. 2, 2011) –On this week’s episode of INSIDE THE NFL James Brown, Phil Simms, Cris Collinsworth and Warren Sapp discuss Tim Tebow’s future as the starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos. San Francisco 49ers linebacker Patrick Willis joins Simms and Sapp via satellite. Willis discusses NFL rule changes and the effect they have on his position.
Plus INSIDE THE NFL takes a look at some of the key players this season who are not performing to the best of their abilities. The episode premieres tonight, Nov. 2 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME.
INSIDE THE NFL, now in its 33rd season, airs every Wednesday night through the NFL season on SHOWTIME for a total of 23 episodes, with multiple replays each week on SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME EXTREME® and availability on SHOWTIME On Demand.
INSIDE THE NFL is produced by CBS Sports and NFL Films. The executive producers are CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus and NFL Films President Steve Sabol. Pete Radovich Jr., the Emmy Award-winning Creative Director for CBS Sports, serves as coordinating producer.
Following are excerpts from this week’s episode:
Warren Sapp on the Pittsburgh Steelers…
SAPP: It’s not over for the Steelers, I’ll say that. It’s not over, but they didn’t roll out that same old tired defensive game plan that we’ve seen the last six times, the zone blitz, the whatever else they like to do. Troy Polamalu was not on the back end. He was down on the box where he can affect the game in the way they like to… How old was the Pittsburgh Steelers defense in week one? Old, 31-plus. Now they’re just a little over 28 ½. I know three years doesn’t sound like a lot… James Harrison, James Farrior and Aaron Smith. They were 35, 33 and 36. They went down to 23, 24 and 25.
On Denver Broncos Quarterback Tim Tebow…
SIMMS: I think in professional sports, there were so many people that were on his (Tim Tebow’s) side. I understand he was arguably one of the greatest players in college history, but so much was heaped upon him before he did it on a professional field. I think that backfires on players and…it (becomes) resentment. And players can’t wait to get a part of that. And I’ve told you and I say on this show, when I watch it in preseason, when he would come in the game I know I saw it on the field. The tempo picked up for the other team…he got cheap-shotted four or five times in the preseason that was never called because they knew it was him… The analogy, do you remember when Michael Vick came in the league and it was out of control? The other players wanted a piece of Michael Vick.
COLLINSWORTH: What bothered me was to see them mocking him in prayer. In other words, now the new thing, it used to be planking…but now it’s doing “the Tebow”, doing that thing. So when you start mocking someone in prayer, to me I saw it, and it made me immediately uncomfortable. And I think the reason is…this kid has not changed. It’s not like he came in and started marketing himself. This is a young man that went on missions to Asia to try and help young people. He’s always been very public with his faith. He’s not trying to make money off this. He’s not trying to be something he’s not. So now people are saying you can’t do that anymore. Well, you’re asking him to take a core element of who he is and change that and be someone else. And to me, that’s not fair.
COLLINSWORTH: Nobody enjoyed watching him play more at Florida then I did. I’m a (University of Florida) Gator. I’ve cheered for him. I like what he is as a person, as well. He has to change the way he’s playing the game of football right now. You cannot scramble around in the NFL and make people miss and create big plays the way he did in college. He’s going to have to get the ball out of his hand, do it quickly and he has got to do it this week to keep his starting job.
On Chris Johnson not performing to his expected abilities…
COLLINSWORTH: I think there are individuals too, that have to begin to step up and probably at the top of my list would be Chris Johnson, of the (Tennessee) Titans. Now, I understand they’ve had some injuries, especially at the wideout position so they’re not able to throw the ball down the field like they were. So they’re getting more eight-in-the-box and all that. But I just watched the tape of them against Houston and he looks like one of those boxers who knows he’s not going to win the fight, so he’s just trying not to get knocked out at this point. Chris Johnson, right now, is not the same guy that we’ve seen in the past.
Patrick Willis on the rule changes in the NFL…
WILLIS: I honestly do not know what the game is coming to. I’ve been playing like that ever since I was a kid. I couldn’t afford to play pee-wee football so we (would) just get together and a bunch of guys would just go out there, no pads, no helmets on and we’d just hit each other. And that’s why I love playing the game of football because a physical sport is a sport where you can just hit a guy and not get in trouble for it. And now it just feels like you can’t even form tackle a guy. If you form tackle your facemask is going to be in there and now you get in trouble for that. It’s almost like they tell you just take your shoulder off and just tap him with that because you can’t use (anything) else. Before you know it, it is going to be tag football and I just don’t understand some of the things, the changes like those big old 300-pound linemen can run out there and cut us in open field but yet we can’t go and defend a guy from getting a first down or making a catch that can seal the game, or cause the series to extend longer. So, I really don’t know. But at the end of the day I’m going to play the game and I’m going to let whatever happens, happen. I’m a man of the game and I want to be for the game. But at the same time too… I love to play this game because it’s a physical sport and I’m not going to stop being physical until the day I’m done playing.