Thursday, September 15, 2011

Moneyball

You may or may not have read the book Moneyball, or may have seen the ads with the soon to be released movie with Brad Pitt, but in essence it is about how the Oakland A's played the statistical odds of baseball in their favor with players they could afford to win.

What does this have to do with football? The money.  Tim Tebow generates money, and interest, and ad clicks, and web traffic, all of which equals more money. Tim Tebow is a cash cow, and if you want your Tebow questions answered, follow the money.

If you follow Jim Saccomano, Vice President of Public Relations for the Denver Broncos, on twitter you see the Broncos' tv share ratings each week.  For example, "Broncos-Raiders had a 36.7 Denver TV rating w/a 61 share; the share was highest in Denver since 12/20/09, 64 share, also vs. Oak."

The Broncos had their highest ratings when Tim Tebow came into the game last during the preseason.  Interestingly the ratings dropped when Tebow exited the game, and Brady Quinn took over the reigns.

If you go to the Broncos' website and click on a video, you first watch an ad for the official Broncos sports shop.  Check whose jersey is out front. The co-second string QB's.


As frustrating as the Tebow-Orton QB controversy is, it keeps Denver in the news.  And it keeps people watching, and even though Tebow's jersey sales have dipped, the web traffic and viewer ratings are up.  Some people believe that there is no such thing as bad press.  We're beginning to think that the Broncos' PR department subscribes to this theory.

Why don't they play Tebow? Because Fox believes his best chance to win is with Orton.  Another reason, if Tebow plays and is a bust, the jersey sales tank, and the clicks slow, his trade stock drops, and it is a no win proposition. It is better to bring him along than to sacrifice him in the short term.  And it is the same reason they won't cut Tebow, because you do not let a cash cow/interest generator go, especially after cutting him a $6 million check.

A billboard calling for Tebow to start isn't going to change Fox or Elway's minds.  What turned the tide last year?  When the Broncos kept losing,  fans stopped coming,  tickets sales dropped off, and then Orton was injured.  With all the coach speak, and obfuscations, coming from Coach Fox, John Elway, and the Broncos' PR office it is hard to know what to believe.  Maybe they are waiting to develop him, maybe not. But they aren't going to play him soon, and they aren't going to trade or cut him.

Either way, relax Tebow fans.  Our boy is no quitter.  He'll keep at it and, eventually, we'll get to see him play.  If it is for Denver or another team, we don't really care. Okay, that's not entirely true.  We'd rather not see him wear "garnet and gold" like Grossman is.  That would hurt.