Nightline co-anchor Terry Moran delivered a surprisingly positive assessment of Tim Tebow on Monday night, lauding the Christian quarterback as "inspired," "lifted up" and "strengthened" by "a power beyond his understanding."
Moran also highlighted, "Psychologists are increasingly finding that the very fact that a person has religious faith can help lead to the kind of success Tim Tebow has had." It wasn't all complimentary, however, the program's journalists repeatedly went out of their way to assert just how "controversial" Tebow is.
Co-anchor Cynthia McFadden teased, "Just ahead, he says that the teammate he counts on the most is God and that's put Tim Tebow in the center of a thunderous controversy."
She later warned, "Well, tonight, my co-anchor Terry Moran profiles a NFL star Tim Tebow whose show of faith is creating controversy."
McFadden also misinterpreted, "Does God follow football? Devout quarterback Tim Tebow attributes his heavenly winning streak to the power of prayer and it has sparked a fierce debate about whether he's on to something."
But, according to the Wall Street Journal 's Patton Dodd:
In postgame interviews, the young quarterback often starts by saying, "First, I'd like to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" and ends with "God bless." He stresses that football is just a game and that God doesn't care who wins or loses.
However, Moran made sure to expose this hateful rant by comedian John Oliver (of The Daily Show):
JOHN OLIVER: If I was in a room with Tim Tebow and bin Laden and I had a gun with one bullet in it, I'd shoot bin Laden. I'm not a monster. But if I had two bullets, I'd shoot Tim Tebow first!
Moran appeared quite taken by the Christian quarterback, insisting, "In hard times, in uncertain times, this young man, against all odds, in spite of his own physical shortcomings, has led comeback after comeback for the Broncos."
The Nightline report didn't get into Tebow's "controversial anti-abortion ad." NBC's "Today " highlighted this in a December 12 report.
A transcript of the December 12 segment can be found below: