Tim Tebow: Trading Embattled Quarterback Should Be Priority for Jets

Justin OnslowContributor IIFebruary 27, 2013

ORCHARD PARK, NY - DECEMBER 30: Tim Tebow #15 of the New York Jets looks on from the sideline during an NFL game against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on December 30, 2012 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

New York Jets general manager John Idzik has a lot of work to do this offseason in an attempt to turn things around. Trading Tim Tebow should be one of his highest priorities.

Tebow’s stay in New York is over. Fair or not, he didn’t get his chance to shine, and the Jets are going to move on this offseason. They just need to find a willing suitor.

In early February, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the Jets didn’t plan on releasing the former Florida star. The ploy could be an attempt to posture, hoping to spark an interest in teams willing to give something up to acquire his services. Regardless of the circumstances, there’s little chance he will still be in New York when the 2013 season starts.

The arguments for and against Tebow’s abilities are tired. He’ll never prove what he can and cannot do without being given the opportunity, but there’s little more to be said on the topic. As it stands, he’s buried on the Jets’ depth chart with no chance of a future with the team.

Tebow is a polarizing figure in the public eye. He has never openly asked for the spotlight, but here he stands beneath it. As long as the media and fans continue to talk about him, New York will be in a no-win scenario. Trading him is really its only option.

Like a romantic relationship that has run its course, the acrimonious nature of Tebowmania in New York will only continue to cause headaches for Idzik, Rex Ryan, Woody Johnson and yes, even Tebow. With scrutiny and distaste for all involved parties around every corner, there isn’t a scenario in which the quarterback stays, gets a chance to play and succeeds with the Jets.

As it stands, Tebow is in limbo, patiently waiting for his exit from the toxic situation in which he is entrenched. The longer he is under contract with the Jets, the longer the Jets have one more headache to deal with. They can’t afford all the drama. In case Idzik hadn’t noticed, his team isn’t in the best shape right now.

According to Gary Myers of the New York Daily News, the Jets are “actively shopping” star cornerback Darrelle Revis after various grumblings about contracts and performance and all the things so many professional athletes complain about.

Revis wants more money, but apparently Idzik isn’t playing along. And while that situation could boil over at any moment, the Jets still aren’t any closer to fixing their biggest issues.

New York is in the shape it is in right now for various reasons, but some blame also has to be directed at Mark Sanchez. After an atrocious 2012 during which he threw just 13 touchdowns and 18 interceptions, Sanchez looks to be another failed option under center. Idzik can’t be happy with the former USC standout, but the cap hit from cutting him (potentially as large as $17.1 million) would be crippling to the short-term flexibility of the team.

On top of the obvious problems, the Jets also need to find a way to patch up some holes on the defensive side of the ball, including the glaring lack of a pass rush.

Idkiz has a lot to deal with, and the Tebow situation shouldn’t be one of them. It’s obvious the Jets don’t intend to use him, and there’s no sense in delaying the inevitable. Trading (or releasing) Tebow should be a high priority, regardless of the return.

When Johnson decided to bring Tebow to New York via a trade with the Broncos, it was obvious he was doing so as much for the publicity and ticket sales as he was for the football aspects. The former have dried up, and every day Tebow is in a Jets uniform is another day the situation becomes more discordant.

A lot can be said for respecting the best interests of a professional athlete. This isn’t the time to consider what is and isn’t best for Tebow—frankly, that argument has been overdone. It’s obvious he would be in a better situation elsewhere.

If the Jets hope to turn things around in 2013, they need to get their house in order. They need to cut ties with the situations that are leading to divisions in the locker room, on the sidelines and among the fanbase.