I always figured that if/when Chuck Norris and Tim Tebow crossed paths in the pop culture spectrum, the internet would simply cease to exist. Norris, Tebow. Tebow, Walker, Texas Ranger. It's just too much for us bloggers. After all, the World Wide Web has taught us that Norris slams revolving doors and that Tebow hits blackjack with one card.
It's no wonder that Norris has decided to pen a 1,000-word column praising his fellow American superhero. What is odd, though, is that said column appears on a website that claims to be dedicated to "documenting, exposing and neutralizing liberal media bias."
Norris, who has expressed some fairly controversial views over the years, published the item this week on the politically conservative website NewsBusters.org. In it, he makes some valid points, all of which are overshadowed by who is delivering the message and the forum he's using to deliver it. He also draws a page from Hawk Harrelson by making up an acronym to describe Tebow as his UCP – Ultimate Clutch Player.
Norris points to what Tebow did with the Broncos in 2011, calling it "amazing." He's right, it was amazing. And it was 2011. That's like a presidential term in the NFL world, at the very least. Tebow's been discarded by two teams since, and there's a reason for that. Norris glosses over Tebow's "poor technical skills" while drumming up intangibles like leadership and we get into a debate we've heard thousands of times before.
Norris concludes that Tebow is a winner, but that's an exhausted cliché. But you really realize how little this has to do with actual football when Norris quotes Martin Luther King while claiming that the Jacksonville Jaguars brass has to do the right thing by bringing in Tebow, as if it would somehow be morally wrong not to.
Nobody owes Tebow anything. He's unemployed right now because he isn't particularly good. But, frankly, if he remains unemployed, it could very well be because of people like Norris.
Sadly, by politicizing Tebow's unemployment status merely by publishing a column like this in a place like that, Norris is only hurting his favorite football player's chances of landing another NFL job. NFL front offices don't want lightning rods, and Norris is only feeding the perception that signing a player like Tebow could attract electrostatic discharges from the sky.
This isn't the first time Tebow has been victimized by the power of outside forces. The reality is that his strongest supporters are actually hurting him a lot more than helping him.
Written by a sportswriter on a sports website, this column would fly. And it might not have even been so bad had Norris himself published the same piece in a less political spot. But combine the author and the outlet and you change the concept as well as the reception.
More harm than good. That's so Chuck Norris.