Camp takeaways: No special Tebow treatment

Camp takeaways: No special Tebow treatment
June 13, 2013, 2:30 pm
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Here are seven takeaways from Patriots OTA's:

I don’t think Tim Tebow’s going to get any special treatment from the Patriots. I think he’ll be coached harder than any player they have when training camp starts next month. The reason? Other players will be watching to see if kid gloves are applied to a guy who did less than zero in 2012 and has a lot of work ahead of him to carve a spot with this team.
 
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It will also be in Tebow’s best interest to be a lot less conspicuous in Foxboro than he’s been in other spots. Bemused looks on the faces of teammates and coaches while filing past the post-practice media horde before Tebow’s Tuesday’s State of the Tebow Address showed the oddness of it isn’t lost on them.
 
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Brian Daboll, hired during the offseason as a coaching assistant, could be the point man on the development of Tebow. During Wednesday’s end-of-practice session of 11-on-11 quarterbacked by Tebow, Daboll was the overseer and between-plays adviser to Tebow. During that session – and one on Tuesday – you could see the sightline difference that Tebow deals with as a 6-foot-2 quarterback who has a tendency to crouch in the pocket and look for escape routes as opposed to the tall-in-the-pocket stature of Tom Brady and Ryan Mallett. Both of those players, when harried or uncertain, shuffle and keep the ball in a ready-to-throw position. Tebow has a habit of getting small and squaring his shoulders to the line to figure out which way to best escape the pocket and throw on the run. It will be interesting to see if that gets tweaked out of his game.
 
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Given the improvements Mallett’s apparently made in his delivery – shortening his windup and making quicker reads – he may be the one who least enjoys the attention being lavished on Tebow. He didn’t seem to psyched to be buffeted by questions about a guy some speculate could be in line to succeed him as Brady’s backup.
 
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As for Brady, he seems almost ambivalent about Tebow’s presence. He’s seen – and been in the center of – enough hype and hoopla to regard it for what it’s worth: irrelevant to the job he’ll be doing. Brady has enough on his plate, never mind worrying about how Tebow looks when he’s taking reps.
 
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Brandon Spikes is a smart enough guy. He knows how implausible his explanation sounds when he says he gets more out of working out by himself than with his teammates. Spikes’ addendum to that claim was that he’s a non-conformist and likes to do things differently. And that’s fine and his right. But he doesn’t have to ask people to suspend logic and accept that the way to get better in the ultimate team sport is to be 1,000 miles away from your team.
 
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Heading into training camp, it will be interesting to see the way the early wide receiver reps get doled out. Two players – Kenbrell Thompson and Lavelle Hawkins – seemed to play well enough in the limited time the media saw them this spring to command a longer look. Additionally, if the team adds Chaz Schilens, who was in for a workout this week, they will have added a tall (6-4) solid (225) target to their group.