Add another story to the growing legend of Tim Tebow. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Denver QB played through considerable pain after sustaining serious injuries in the Broncos' 45-10 loss to the Patriots on Saturday.
Tebow was presumably injured on a hit from Vince Wilfork and Rob Ninkovich of New England. That's when backup QB Brady Quinn started warming up. But Tebow refused to come out of the game, even though it was later discovered that he had torn cartilage in his first rib where it attaches to the sternum, bruised his lung and had fluid buildup in his chest, according to an NFL source.
While he perhaps didn't realize the gravity of his injuries then, the pain overtook him in his sleep both Saturday night and Sunday night, eventually forcing him to get an MRI on Monday. Although the injuries aren't expected to interfere with his offseason training program, they may well prevent him from playing in the Pro Bowl, in which he is the second alternate quarterback, behind Tom Brady and Ben Roethlisberger. With Brady expected to pull out of the game due to his continuing climb through the postseason and Roethlisberger nursing injuries, Tebow could have played in his first Pro Bowl, according to Schefter. The likelihood of that has now decreased substantially.
According to the AP's Arnie Stapleton, Tebow is expected to make a full recovery from his injuries without surgery.
Saturday's game has now become a story of adding injury to insult for Tebow. It was already a rough enough night for Tebow at Gillette Stadium, as he completed just 9-of-26 passes for 136 yards in the Broncos' season-ending loss to the Patriots. The famously mobile signalcaller also was limited to 13 yards on the ground. Still, poor performance aside, team president John Elway said at a season-ending press conference Monday that Tebow will enter 2012 training camp as the Broncos' starting QB.