God’s quarterback, Tim Tebow, is an American football player and evangelical Christian who has the US in a frenzy. Initially it was his performance on the sidelines that had people talking. Before every match he plays for the Denver Broncos, he drops to one knee and prays. His gesture, reminiscent of Rodin’s The Thinker, has spawned much debate, a verb – “Tebowing” – and a website on which fans post pictures of themselves imitating the pose. Photographs of him in conversation with the Almighty have dominated sports pages here. If you were to imagine a similar scene in Britain, it would improbably involve Wayne Rooney or David Beckham pausing to genuflect before Jesus, while fans look on in awe.
But then Tebow’s underdog team started winning, something no one ever expected, and more attention was paid to his actions on the pitch. The quarterback’s story jumped from the back pages to the front as he seemingly miraculously proceeded to wipe the floor with all opposition, always in the final minutes – sometimes seconds – of a game.