The moment Jeremy Lin was given a pop culture title (Linsanity!!!), the Tim Tebow comparisons flew at viral speed. They both win, we said, and they’re both talented and religious.
For me, there was always one massive deal breaker that we conveniently overlooked when Linsanity was at its height before the New York Knicks point guard suffered a left knee injury in late March that required surgery. Tebow was a highly-hyped megastar long before his heroics in 2011 after he was a first-round pick, a Heisman winner, and a national champion with the Florida Gators, while Lin was an undrafted nobody.
Although his time in the spotlight was(?) shorter, Lin was the far better story during that brief period, and that’s coming from someone who’s watched maybe four full NBA games all season. But here’s one undeniable truth, and an important link during an NFL offseason when players are still routinely being morons and eating marijuana: they’re both genuinely good people, and fine role models who’ve never had even a small public misstep.
Tebow was included in Time Magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people in the world, and Lin wrote his thoughts on the Jets quarterback:
He is unashamed of his convictions and faith, and he lives a life that consistently reflects his values, day in and day out. Through his foundation, he constantly reaches out to people and communities in need of hope. He realizes what he has been blessed with and seeks to help those who are worse off. As athletes, we pour our hearts into winning games. Tim is a reminder that life is about much more than that.
I understand that the public doesn’t take kindly to preaching, but the eye rolls towards Tebow when he mentions his charity work have always been a little baffling. While other athletes are busy wiggling out of lengthy punishments because they waited an extra hour to have sex with a minor, Lin and Tebow are connected in the sense that they continually use their platform for something productive.
The only fault anyone can find with Tebow is that he’s mildly annoying while referencing a higher power. We should probably get past that soon.
And now you want to know the rest of the story…
- The observations and commentary will continue to trickle out following the glory that is schedule release day, but here’s one of the most interesting nuggets I’ve seen so far. The Lions have four primetime games in 2012, which equals the number of primetime games they’ve had over the past 11 years. [Mike Tirico on Twitter]
- Saying that sports fans in Philadelphia are angry is like saying that there are blond girls in Los Angeles. But Eagles fans may have a legitimate schedule gripe, as four of their toughest games against the Steelers, Lions, Falcons, and Redskins will also be against a well-rested opponent coming off of a bye week. [The 700 Level]
- The Bengals won’t leave the state of Ohio between Weeks 5 and 10. [Adam Schefter on Twitter]
- 32 intriguing and/or terribly lopsided positional matchups in the 2012 schedule. [Pro Football Focus]
- Would you like to smash things in your office? Good, watch this video and warn your co-workers. [NFL.com 49ers-Lions movie trailer]
- Getting Melvin Ingram and Bobby Wagner in the first two rounds would be a pretty sweet haul for the Seahawks. [SB Nation Seattle]
- Michael Irvin compared the current Bengals to his 1991 Cowboys. So for once, Michael Irvin sort of made sense. [Cincy Jungle]
- Eric Berry is still cryptically hinting that he may have been the target of a bounty. [PFT]
- If we weren’t already at the point where the fine people of Minnesota should be seriously concerned about their football team relocating, then we’re definitely there now. [Pioneer Press]
- Sure, it’s early, and it’s only April, but the Colts have 4,000 season tickets still available, and so far this offseason they’ve only had an 87 percent renewal rate. That’s not much fan confidence and support for a team that’s about to draft a quarterback who’s supposedly going to be just as good as the guy who left town. [Stampede Blue]
- If you haven’t seen them yet, please use caution while looking at the Steelers throwback uniforms. Looking directly into the yellow and black bumblebee stripes can have permanent and damaging effects on the retina. [Score Buzz]