If reports are true, Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow has chosen to be traded to the New York Jets in exchange for draft picks. The completion of this move comes after an eventful Wednesday, when an original deal between the two teams hit a snag.
While such an acquisition might seem baffling from a football standpoint, the addition of one of sports' most marketable athletes is a brilliant business move by the Jets.
This past season, Tebow finished second behind NFL MVP and Super Bowl XLV MVP Aaron Rodgers in jersey sales, despite starting the season as the Broncos' third-string quarterback. The Jets, meanwhile, did not have a single player in the top 20.
It is fair to assume that will change in 2012 once Nike's license has officially begun, of course.
The Jets, who do not have a very high-profile player to sell to their fans—certainly not at Tebow's level, anyway—will definitely see a major boost in merchandise sales. Mitch Modell, CEO of Modell's Sporting Goods, is hoping the Tebow Jets T-shirts come in by the end of this week because he knows how big this move is financially.
After seeing the impact that "Linsanity" was able to have on New York City, it will pale in comparison to the vastness of "Tebowmania." And the Jets will be reaping all of its rewards for the slim cost of $1.2 million in salary, two late-round draft picks and $2.53 million in reimbursement to the Broncos.
A lovable, humble quarterback whose notoriety in the world of football and pop culture has enjoyed numerous opportunities and sponsorships—including Nike, Jockey and FRS—in his short NFL career thus far, Tebow's opportunities will only grow playing in the No. 1 media market in the world.
Along with those opportunities flocks a legion of loyal fans capable of unseating Jets incumbent starting quarterback Mark Sanchez in favor of their beloved warrior all on their own. Don't scoff at the idea—they have done it once before.
With so few available, Tebow's presence on the Jets' roster likely won't change much in terms of ticket sales, but in the battle for the New York-New Jersey metro area with their stadium-mates, the New York Giants, Tebow easily garners the Jets all the attention and back-page coverage they could possibly want.
And if that doesn't work, the quarterback battle certain to ensue between Tebow and Sanchez will. After all, any press is good press if you're the Jets.