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Tim Tebow Inc.

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Tim Tebow's appeal has always been that he is a hard working kid, who loves Jesus, his Mom and Dad and the Gators. We don't know that much about Tebow (or any Gator), so we don't know how much is legit and how much is a facade. We accept everything is legit, but since Tebow has left college, we can become more curious. Especially about his actions leading up to the NFL Draft.

People have made money off Tebow for a while, from UF selling No. 15 jerseys to those awful "I Heart T Bow" shirts. Maybe then we shouldn't be surprised that Tebow is charging $160 for an autograph Saturday in Jacksonville. That $160 does include a free Bible verse, but you have to pay $25 extra for "06/08 Champs" next to Tebow's signature. A "portion" or "some" of the proceeds will go towards the Tim Tebow Foundation.

One question we should ask Tebow is why he is charging $160 for an autograph. And he has to answer about his charity. For instance; how much of that $160 is actually helping people and how much will pay for the fancy website and staff? A "portion" and "some" could be 1% or 99%. (As a reference, here is the most recent tax information for the Bob Tebow Evangelistic Association.) Tebow is an adult and he can handle this stuff.

Tebow can apparently also handle speaking engagements, making a documentary film and training for the NFL Draft. Of all this stuff, only one thing benefits Tebow long term; the Draft. Instead of spending every waking moment in the gym, trying to secure millions of dollars, Tebow is being pulled in every direction. It seems clear that either Tebow or his handlers think NFL success is guaranteed, so it's no big deal to spend time at Daytona instead of in training. Or, and this is far more dangerous, his handlers want to make cash on Tebow before his star power runs out.

Tebow and his handlers have every right to make as much money as humanly possible. But like the family who buys a $250,000 house because they think they will always afford it, they are narrow minded. In their minds, it won't matter if Tebow is drafted in the third round, because he will be successful anyway. But any NFL fan can tell you that players can be a victim of circumstance. Quarterbacks get stuck behind awful offensive lines and fail. Defensive ends get double teams and bad stat lines because their linemen suck. What happens if Tebow is drafted by a team with a long term quarterback, like New England? Does he earn the league minimum and hope to be the next Matt Cassel? What if he becomes a bigger, stronger Joey Harrington? Will Tebow's time spent in other endeavors have had a negative impact? That's another question that could be asked of Tebow.

I mentioned at the top that we really don't know a lot about Tebow. For instance, it is possible that Tebow does not want to be an NFL player. He has a higher calling and he had to wait for his UF career to end to actually commit to it. Tebow continues to talk about how badly he wants to become an NFL quarterback. But he is not going to do that by spending the weeks before the Draft working as an ATM for his handlers.