Tim Tebow: Jets Must Play Polarizing QB to Showcase Star for Potential Trade

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistDecember 20, 2012

SEATTLE, WA - NOVEMBER 11:  Quarterback Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Jets warms up prior to the game against the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on November 11, 2012 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

The New York Jets finally decided to bench Mark Sanchez. Instead of turning to Tim Tebow, the team handed the starting gig to Greg McElroy, which says a lot. The Jets still have to find a way to get Tebow involved if they want to trade him, though.

Rich Cimini of ESPN New York reports the team is planning to part ways with the polarizing quarterback after the season—whether that means via trade or release depends on the market. He adds that Mark Sanchez's future is also uncertain.

It's hard to imagine many teams being interested in Tebow right now. He's attempted just eight passes and racked up a measly 141 yards of offense following the ballyhooed trade that sent him from the Denver Broncos to New York.

Perhaps the most perplexing aspect of the entire situation is figuring out what changed from the day the Jets acquired him to the day they named McElroy the Week 16 starter. The team seemingly lost all faith in him at some point.

You could argue they found out Tebow isn't built to be a full-time starter in the NFL, but that was the prevailing opinion before the trade, despite his strong run with the Broncos last season.

Even if the team didn't want to start him, he should have still held some value as a gimmick quarterback running special packages, especially with the Jets offense struggling so mightily at times.

Instead, he spent a vast majority of the offensive snaps watching from the sideline as Sanchez turned the ball over on a regular basis. That has to raise a red flag for any team thinking about making any type of offer for him.

It's also why the Jets have to make sure they get him involved in the offense over the final two weeks. Although they want to get a look at McElroy to see if he can build on a strong relief showing against the Arizona Cardinals, they can't shut Tebow out completely.

There are likely coaching staffs around the league that believe they could use Tebow in some fashion. As a starting quarterback? Probably not. But in some way, shape or form to bring an added dimension to their offense.

They aren't going to give up anything without getting a better look at him, however. The coaches want at least a handful of possessions per game to see what they would be acquiring, and to look for any potential reason why the Jets didn't use him.

At this point, the Jets have nothing to lose by playing Tebow. If they can do anything to help him build some trade value before the offseason, it's the right move. He doesn't have much, if any, right now.

Then again, the Jets have struggled with quarterback decisions all season. There's no reason to believe that will change now.