Tim Tebow’s 316 Passing Yards Evokes Biblical Number

The Internet practically exploded once astute football fans noticed the coincidence. Did all that Tebowing pay off?

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Marc Piscotty/Reuters

Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow prays after the Broncos defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers in overtime in the NFL AFC wildcard playoff football game in Denver, Colorado, January 8, 2012

It would have been more than enough for the polarizing Denver Broncos quarterback to simply lead his underdog team to victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday in the AFC wild-card game. And Tim Tebow did, thanks to his 80-yard touchdown pass on the first play of overtime that left the Steelers and the watching world simply stunned.

But then the facts and figures emerged, and the Internet verily exploded: Tebow threw for exactly 316 yards in the 29-23 upset win, presenting an eerie allusion to the Bible’s John 3: 16 passage — whose number Tebow famously wore in the black under his eyes when he led the Florida Gators to victory in the 2009 collegiate national championship game. What’s more, that event took place exactly three years ago on the same day as his latest miracle comeback. And that wasn’t it for the coincidences: Tebow set an NFL playoff record with, you guessed it, 31.6 yards per completion and the TV rating on CBS peaked between 8.00-8.15pm ET with a rating of, say it ain’t so, 31.6.

(PHOTOS: John 3: 16 in Pop Culture)

A cursory glance at Google Trends hot searches Monday morning presented three of a kind: the top trio were, in order, the 3: 16 passage (“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life”), followed by Tebow and Tim Tebow.

So Tebowmania is somehow getting bigger. We’ve been down this road before, of course, but surely nothing can match these twin events, right? Could Tebow’s Broncos manage to pull off a win next weekend against the New England Patriots — who not only will be a heavier favorite than the Steelers but also schooled Denver in the regular season? If so, then surely only God (or, to dial back the hyperbole, Aaron Rodgers or Drew Brees) will be able to stop Tebow from winning the Super Bowl. For now, he is working in mysterious ways. (Via CNN.)

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