Opinion: The mind-boggling Tebow trade, one year later

Tim Tebow makes news even when it's the offseason. Credit: Getty Images
Tim Tebow was introduced to the media five days after being acquired on March 21.
Credit: Getty Images

Exactly one year ago, the Jets traded for Tim Tebow, a shocking move that addressed none of their needs but instantly created controversy and turmoil.

The fact that wide receiver Jeremy Kerley had more passing yards than Tim Tebow last year tells you everything you need to know about the NFL’s most scrutinized quarterback’s one, and likely only, year in New York. We didn’t learn much about Tebow on the field last season; the body of his work was so small as to make an assessment impossible, but we learned his place isn’t here with the Jets.

He came with much fanfare and hype, a standing room-only press conference for a player who was only going to be a backup. The Jets were going to revolutionize football, we were told, and the offense was going to utilize the skillset of Tebow, as was the special-teams unit with his role as a personal punt protector. He was set to take over Madison Avenue as the country’s most prominent evangelical Christian.

Instead, he ended up being the biggest distraction in the history of the game and through no fault of his own the Jets came crashing down like the walls of Jericho.

Just a couple weeks earlier, the team had given quarterback Mark Sanchez what amounted to a five-year contract extension to be their starting quarterback and the face of the franchise. Then within that very month they traded for Tebow.

His track record in Denver the season before showed he could start, play and win in the NFL, even if it was ugly. He could never do that in New York because he was never given the chance.

To utilize Tebow properly — and he can be a starting quarterback in the NFL — the offense needs to be geared around his skillset. He won’t thrive in a conventional offense, and he won’t succeed as a pocket passer. But the Jets also learned the hard way he won’t do well as a gimmick.

Where the Jets went wrong with Tebow was in not letting him compete. Throughout his career, there were wobbly passes and plenty of moments of the cringe worthy variety, but Tebow somehow always seemed to get the job done, especially in big moments. It doesn’t mean he would have won the starting job or beaten out Sanchez, but the Jets doomed him from the start by limiting his role and anointing him as just a backup.

Now with a new general manager, the Jets better learn from this mistake, even as they prepare to move on from Tebow.

In all likelihood, there will be no second coming of Tebow in New York with his days numbered with the Jets. He is beaten, battered and bruised, and his already maligned reputation as a quarterback only got worse from his time in New York.

Tebow will likely be cut at some point in the next month or two and a forward-thinking NFL general manager will sign him to a contract. Tebow will go in and compete and push for the starting job wherever he signs — just like he should have been allowed to do with the Jets.

Follow Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

New statue of Penn State's Paterno set for…

By David DeKokHARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (Reuters) - Fundraising for a new statue depicting Joe Paterno "as the man he was and not Joe the football coach"…

National

On newly released tape, 'Squeaky' Fromme says was…

Manson Family member Squeaky Fromme told a mental health examiner in newly released interview the "X" she carved in her forehead was meant to separate her from "the system."

Local

New York-based Century 21 store coming to The…

The former Strawbridge & Clothier building will once again host a department store. City officials on Thursday announced New York-based Century 21 Department Stores will…

National

Electric Zoo tickets on sale Tuesday as festival…

Electric Zoo tickets go on sale Tuesday. The festival announced plans to amp up security after two attendees died last year from apparent drug overdoses.

Movies

Tribeca: 'Goodbye to All That' star Paul Schneider…

Paul Schneider talks about his new film "Goodbye to All That," not acting too much and how he'd rather indulge in simple pleasures than play the scene.

The Word

Taylor Swift battles paparazzi daily at Tribeca penthouse

We're entranced by these photos of poor Taylor Swift leaving her Tribeca apartment.

Movies

Tribeca: Nikki Reed on going funny for a…

"Intramural" star Nikki Reed talks about being the straight person in a broad comedy, spending time in Austin and how "Thirteen" was a "miracle."

Movies

Interview: 'The Quiet Ones' star Sam Claflin on…

"Hunger Games" co-star Sam Claflin talks about his new horror film "The Quiet Ones," plus how technology connects him with fans.

MLB

The return of Cole Hamels brings optimism

Cole Hamels’ quality start Wednesday was a nice change of pace from his recent season debuts.

MLB

Tony Gwynn Jr. a nice surprise for Phillies

Tony Gwynn Jr. has been a plus in every way for the Phillies.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

MLB

5 infamous pitcher ejections for cheating

Never fear Yankees fans, Michael Pineda is far from the first MLB pitcher to be thrown out of a game for cheating.

Food

Hai Street Kitchen opening in Rittenhouse May 22

Japanese cuisine will get a Chipotle-style twist at Hai Street Kitchen & Co., a new casual, quick-food restaurant opening near Rittenhouse Square on May 22.…

Parenting

New study: Inside the wage gap between boys…

According to a new study, there's a wage gap between boys and girls, with boys earning more allowance for less chores.

Tech

From Apple TV to Fire TV, big changes…

Apple is set to launch a new generation of it's Apple TV, which grossed over $1 billion in 2013. But competition from Amazon and Google looms.

Style

Katy Perry releases a new Claire’s collection

Katy Perry expands her empire by releasing an accessories collection at Claire's.