Tim Tebow did not take a knee during the national anthem, nor was he protesting anything when he knelt as an NFL quarterback. Nor is he very happy that people are bringing his kneeling into the debate over protests during the NFL’s national anthem.
When Tim Tebow was a quarterback in the National Football League, he would periodically take a knee for a short, silent prayer. His action became known by many as “Tebowing.”
Though, lately, some trying to justify the current spate of anthem protests by NFL players are pointing to Tim’s “Tebowing” as an example of how one man “knelt” on the field and did not get in trouble for it, USA Today reported.
For his part, Tebow sees no similarity at all between his actions and those of the players that came after him.
Now trying his hand as a professional baseball player, Tebow spoke about the controversy Friday before the New York Mets’ Double-A team, the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, prepared to meet the Trenton Thunder.
“I think that’s sometimes one of the things that’s a little bit sad is sometimes people will just try to create something that had zero truth,” Tebow said. “I never did anything during a national anthem but stand and support my country. And then stories can get written, and they can get put out of proportion so that you believe one thing when you’re asking me a question that was nothing that was part of the truth.”
Tebow also said his kneeling was not to “celebrate” a touchdown, either:
A lot of people even think it was a touchdown celebration. I never did it to celebrate a touchdown. I did it from my sophomore year in high school all the way through the NFL, that before and after games I would get on a knee to thank my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and also put things into perspective.
It was never something I did to take away from somebody else. It was just something I did with a personal relationship with my God. So I think that’s just sometimes disappointing when things get taken away from the truth and then it’s just created into whatever somebody wants it to be.
Even Snopes, no right-leaning site, says that Tebow did not kneel during the anthem, nor did he do so in protest of abortion as some Internet memes are claiming.
As to the anthem protests, Tebow noted that he does not have a problem when people stand up for something they believe in.
But he hinted that maybe the national anthem was not the time to make those statements.
“I think it’s important how we do that as well. So I think there’s a lot of players that I’m friends with that have been on both sides and I understand it, and I think what’s more important is to know their heart and where they’re coming from and where the conviction stands in their heart and what they really want to share,” he said.
So far this season during 45 games, Tebow is giving respectable play batting a .234, with four home runs and 19 runs batted in.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.