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Tim Tebow: Losing Job to Greg McIlroy Proves He Won't Be a Jet in 2013

NASHVILLE, TN - DECEMBER 17:  Quarterback Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Jets warms up prior to the game against the Tennessee Titans at LP Field on December 17, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Mike ShiekmanFeatured ColumnistDecember 20, 2016

When Greg McIlroy was given the nod Tuesday morning to be the Jets starting quarterback, that effectively ended the Tim Tebow chapter in New York.

The Jets had two games to take a look at two potential QBs of the future. They went with their seventh-round draft choice over last year’s AFC West champion.

ESPN’s Ed Werder explains the extent to which the Jets have ignored Tebow as a starting candidate:

The Jets traded 2 draft choices and paid the Broncos part of Tim Tebow's signing bonus, ignored Bronco performances, never gave him chance

— Ed Werder (@Edwerderespn) December 18, 2012

That backup obviously has no chance to play under this regime.

Relegating Tebow to the bench suggests he’s not in New York to play football, but to be a mascot.

Furthermore, this decision proves that Rex Ryan never truly saw Tebow as a potential starter. He favors a traditional quarterbacking style of Sanchez and McIlroy, which he has been campaigning for all season.

It’s unlikely any team will take Tebow under his current deal, not even his hometown Jacksonville Jaguars, who pined for him last summer.

Yes, Woody Johnson has said that Tebow will stay in the Big Apple for the remainder of his contract. Those words, though, are merely “owner-speak.”

Johnson is a businessman first, with no need to stay true to his word. The only phrases he’s faithful to are “revenue” and “profit.”

While the Tebow circus generated a ton of press and jersey sales at first, it’s ultimately turned the Jets franchise into a soap opera and anything but a football team.

What makes this conundrum so bewildering is why did the Jets want Tebow if they weren’t going to give him a starting chance?

I have a theory as to why Tebow has been handled this way: Tony Sparano.

Recall that the Jets offensive coordinator won the AFC East title alternating between pro-style and the Wildcat offenses.

Sparano thought he could mimic that play-calling with a mix of Sanchez and Tebow throughout. This became apparent when Santonio Holmes went down and the running game disappeared. Rex Ryan only gave in because his offensive personnel resembled a free-agent All-Star team.

They needed a game-changer and Sparano was willing to give Tebow some plays. Hence why he came in when Sanchez was starting to get some rhythm going against Tennessee.

The Jets OC has no feel for rhythm because he won a division without it.

And now here Tebow stands, without a start nor extending playing time this year.

The locker-room circus isn’t worth it for a player who’s played 40 offensive snaps all season. The Jets will eat Tebow’s contract and the embattled star will have to find another home.

This narrative cannot continue for another year.

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