Tim Tebow Trade Was a 'Mistake' Says Former Jets GM Mike Tannenbaum

Patrick ClarkeCorrespondent IJanuary 16, 2014

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 23: Quarterbacks Tim Tebow #15 and Mark Sanchez #6, look on as teammate Greg McElroy #14 of the New York Jets passes before the start of their game against the San Diego Chargers at MetLife Stadium on December 23, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Rich Schultz/Getty Images

Within the New York Jets fanbase, there has never been a question as to whether the New York Jets were foolish to trade for quarterback Tim Tebow back in March 2012, especially considering just how poorly the team utilized the dual-threat passer before cutting ties with him after one season.

Now, former general manager Mike Tannenbaum has confirmed many fans' suspicions. 

In a recent interview on CBS Sports Radio, the former Jets front office member admitted that it was a "mistake" to trade a pair of draft picks to the Denver Broncos in exchange for the polarizing signal-caller, per NBC Sports Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio: "Obviously we made a couple mistakestrading for Tim Tebow most notably."

Naturally, Tannenbaum was fired nine months after pulling the trigger on the infamous Tebow trade. 

Tebow attempted just eight passes in 12 games with the Jets in 2012, as New York stumbled to a 6-10 finish, it's worst since 2007.

Oct. 8, 2012; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum walks on the sidelines before the game against the Houston Texans at MetLife Stadium.  Mandatory Credit: Andrew Mills/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports
The Star-Ledger-USA TODAY Sports

After taking a jab at Tebow's forgettable season with Gang Green, Tannenbaum praised the former Heisman Trophy winner's drive and offered an optimistic outlook on his future, per Florio:

I would never bet against Tim. We used to have an expression that Tim’s the type of guy who’s either going to be successful or die trying. His relentlessness and passion—I would think he’ll get another opportunity.


Although Tannenbaum's admission reaffirms what many NFL fans already knew, it doesn't put the speculation surrounding Tebow's tenure in New York to rest. It remains to be seen why Tannenbaum and the Jets felt it was necessary to bring in such a polarizing figure and ultimately create a circus around a team that wasn't very good to begin with. 

Perhaps those answers are coming. Regardless, it appears that Tannenbaum's confession will be another obstacle for Tebow should the former QB desire another crack at the NFL.

The former Denver Broncos quarterback made 16 NFL regular-season starts over the course of three seasons, the equivalent of just one full season. But despite his struggles, Tebow is one of the few Heisman Trophy winners to have won an NFL playoff game, per the Daily News' Manish Mehta: 

Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press

Tebow has made it clear that he has no intention of giving up on his dream to become an NFL quarterback anytime soon, but he's currently busy preparing for his new role as a college football analyst for ESPN's SEC Network, which is set to debut in August 2014.


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