And another thing, Tebow…

January 12, 2012

Let's get something straight football fans.

A recent poll revealed that 43% of those asked thought that God helps Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow win.

He (God) does not.

God, almost certainly, does not exist.

Hold on, believers, there's another point here!

What should have been asked is whether Tim Tebow's belief in god helps him win. The answer to that question is: very possibly. But so what? Any strong belief that adds to an athlete's confidence, resolve, focus, etc. may help him or her perform well. One's state of mind - especially in pro football which involves playing with pain, risk of significant injury, and millions of eyes watching your every move - can have a considerable effect on performance.

It doesn't matter whether the belief itself is true or not. Absolute confidence in the Easter Bunny being behind your efforts would have the exact same effect. An athlete who believes a rabbit's foot, a Power Balance bracelet, or a lucky penny will optimize his performance is on a level playing field with one who believes God, Shiva, or Zeus will do the same.

So Tebow's believing is what counts, not the subject of the belief or whether it's delusional or not.

Oh, and another thing.

Since there are plenty of athletes on both sides of every contest openly kneeling, pointing to the sky, and thanking God and Jesus for their success, I think we can see that that playing field is even too. God's children square off to pummel each other every week.

So who gets the win at the end of the day if all beliefs are pretty equal? The better team! (Usually)

The Denver Broncos at 8-8 (after the regular season) are one of the worst teams to ever make the playoffs. Their win at home last week could have only happened against a team as beat up as the Steelers. But Tebow's seen his last miracle. The Patriots will eat him up like a Roman lion.

Where will his savior be then?

James Underdown is Executive Director of the Center for Inquiry Los Angeles, and played football for winning teams each of his 4 years in college.