The most talked-about backup quarterback in the league might be close to giving the fans and media something real to talk about.
Jets head coach Rex Ryan indicated on Friday Tim Tebow could see some time on the field this Monday night at the Titans. Two cracked ribs have limited him over the past month. Tebow suffered the injury on Nov. 11 in a loss at Seattle then played sparingly the next week at St. Louis. Four days later against New England he was listed as active but didn’t play in the Wildcat or on special teams.
Tebow was made inactive the following week in a win over Arizona and returned to active, but didn’t play, this past Sunday in Jacksonville.
Ryan reversed course on Friday after saying Thursday that Tebow would likely be active but not involved in the Wildcat or special teams.
“I said he won’t do personal protecting and all that stuff but he got a couple reps there, more mental things, but he moved around great. This is the best he’s looked in several weeks,” Ryan said. “There could be a chance he does Wildcat, we’ll see. He moved around that good that we could get him back to similar roles.”
So far this season, Tebow has yet to be the quarterback in the conventional offense though he has been used as a decoy in the backfield and as a receiver. In addition, he’s been used in spurts in the Wildcat and as a personal punt protector.
The Titans have been preparing for the Wildcat but even if Tebow was healthy, it doesn’t sound like they anticipate it being a huge part of the Jets’ offensive scheme.
“We still have to prepare for that, for those things. Obviously, they haven’t been using it that much in practice or in games I should say,” Titans head coach Mike Munchak said in a conference call with the New York media on Thursday. “It hasn’t shown up like it may be as much as people thought when they got Tebow. … We assumed even if they did some that it wouldn’t be a big part of the plan.”
Tebow has been cleared to play the past couple weeks but Ryan has taken the responsibility of not putting in a player that up until yesterday he didn’t think was ready to play. Thursday’s practice went a long way in changing that perception.
“I thought he looked really good. It was out there [that] I was just adamant that there would be no Wildcat but I’m like, ‘He might be able to go back to similar roles,’ as good as he looked to me,” Ryan said. “He’s always been cleared to play but as good as he looked to me, I don’t want to rule that out for the simple fact this as good as he looked in several weeks.”
Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.