New York Jets

Tim Tebow: Gadget Plays and Decoys Are QB's Only Purpose for Remainder of Season

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - OCTOBER 14:  Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Jets runs from the field against the Indianapolis Colts at MetLife Stadium on October 14, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images
Ethan GrantAnalyst IOctober 15, 2012

Tim Tebow made a nice splash on Sunday in Week 6 against the Indianapolis Colts, finishing with 30 yards of total offense. Despite the QB's role in the 35-9 win over the Colts, Tebow won't be the starting QB any time soon in New York, and will be resigned to a role of "tricking" the defense from here on out.

Tebow took a direct snap in a punt formation and found linebacker Nick Bellore for a 23-yard gain and a drive-extending play in the second quarter, exciting the fanbase and showing some nice coaching gall by Rex Ryan in a must-win game.

While that was a great play and will end up all over television replays for the next week, it doesn't mean Tebow will or should be taking snaps under center any time soon.

That's not to say he's not an important piece to this team. His role as a decoy and his ability to outmatch the opponents' run defense will come up big for the Jets if they want to make a playoff push in the wide open AFC East.

In both read options and short-yardage packages, there isn't a QB in the league that poses a bigger threat than Tebow. His abilities to run the college formations and plays present a huge advantage should the coaching staff choose to employ them.

However, going forward, don't expect to see Tebow warming up with the first unit unless there is an injury to Mark Sanchez or offensive coordinator Tony Sparano sees something in the defense that warrants a "Wild Jet" offense on the opening drive.

The fact is simple—the Jets are just good enough with Sanchez to keep him under center every week.

After the 23-17 loss to the Houston Texans, arguably the best team in football right now, it's hard to say that Sanchez lost them that football game, or that Tebow would have made a difference.

In big wins over Buffalo and now Indianapolis, what role could Tebow have played to help further his team to a bigger win? He didn't do much besides extend the drive in Week 6, mainly because Shonn Greene carved up the Colts' defense for over 100 yards and three touchdowns.

ESPN's Stephen A. Smith noticed, and he is sure to draw the wrath of colleague Skip Bayless on the network's "First Take" broadcast after this tweet:

Who need @timtebow for a GROUND-AND-pound when Shonn Greene is running the F-Ball like this. We'll see if it continues, though!

— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) October 14, 2012

Greene's big week is a huge confidence-booster heading into next week's rivalry game against the New England Patriots, and his expanded role in the offense also hurts Tebow's chance to be a huge factor.

Although it's getting redundant and certainly muddying up everything the New York Jets do in wins like this one, Tebow's role will be a hot topic for the rest of season.

Hopefully, fans will be levelheaded in their expectations for both their starter and backup QB for the rest of the season. With a crucial stretch of division games ahead and the new information about New England losing their grip on the division lead, things could get real interesting real quick for the Jets.

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