Tebow’s Future Uncertain
NEW YORK – From nearly unstoppable to nearly invisible.
Tim Tebow was two wins from the Super Bowl a year ago. Now, he’s pretty much a player without a team – likely to be released by the New York Jets after one frustrating season and his hometown team in Jacksonville already pulling in the welcome mat.
Even Tebow doesn’t know how this will unfold. A backup role on another NFL team? A position change? The Canadian Football League?
“I don’t know what my future holds, but I know who holds my future,” the devout Christian said in a recent interview with Fox Business Network, his only public comments since his strange Jets season ended.
“And, in that,” he added, “there is a lot of peace and a lot of comfort.”
Tebow barely played for the Jets last season. “An absolute mess,” is the way recently retired special teams coordinator Mike Westhoff described it. Tebow has two years left on his contract, but New York is expected to trade or release him in the next few weeks. So far, destination unknown.
“I can’t imagine a scenario in which he’ll be a Jacksonville Jaguar,” new general manager David Caldwell declared last week. “Even if he’s released.”
While there’s an outside chance Tebow could remain a New Yorker, depending on the whims of the still-to-be-hired GM, it appears highly unlikely.
So, that’s two NFL teams down – the only ones, at that, who showed any interest last offseason when Denver shopped him – and the 25-year-old Tebow’s options appear to be dwindling.
The buzz these days belongs to young quarterbacks like Washington’s Robert Griffin III, Seattle’s Russell Wilson, Indianapolis’ Andrew Luck and San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick. It seems so long ago now that Tebowing – his signature dropping to a knee for a prayerful pose – was all the rage.
But even Tebow never Tebowed during the regular season for the Jets. Not once. Quite a fall for a Heisman Trophy winner and two-time national champion with the University of Florida, and whose No. 15 Broncos jersey ranked second in national sales to Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers in 2011.
The Jets had every intention of trying to make things work with Tebow when general manager Mike Tannenbaum surprisingly acquired him from Denver last March – after Peyton Manning arrived – for fourth- and sixth-round draft picks. But once Tebow got on the field, something went woefully wrong.
“Every opportunity you get, you want to make the most of,” Tebow said a few weeks before the season ended, “and I’d have loved to have more of an opportunity to just play quarterback.”
Acquiring Tebow ultimately helped lead to Tannenbaum and Sparano losing their jobs. And, it clouded Tebow’s prospects in the NFL. No matter what, though, he insists he’s a quarterback.