With word coming out of New York on Thursday that Mark Sanchez will now replace a possibly concussed Greg McElroy as Jets starting quarterback for the team’s season finale against Buffalo this weekend, reality just got delivered with piercing, shiv-in-the-back clarity:
Tim Tebow, you are gone, brother.
For all the hoopla and hysteria that enveloped the acquisition of the former Heisman-winning quarterback and apparent right hand to the big fella up in the heavens if you believe those who genuflect before him, Tebow has been nothing more than a cartoon character in the Big Apple.
Sanchez’s backup, or competition? Puh-leeze. Tebow didn’t even get to be the guy’s go-fer. With this latest move, head coach Rex Ryan bypassed his supposed No. 2 signal-caller for the second time in three weeks – in favor of a lesser talent and now, in essence, damaged goods.
The Jets traded a couple of footballs and a gym bag to Denver for the young man back in March, then made grand proclamations of how he fit what they wanted to do, and if he didn’t that they’d make things fit for him, that they’d utilize his hard-to-define skill set, that he’d energize the squad, if not its entire fan base, that everything and everyone around the organization would be better just by his mere presence.
Nine months, a complete breakdown of quarterback play and the total disruption of an entire franchise later, not to mention a worse-than-it-reads 6-9 record, and it’s safe to label this “experiment as an epic, laughable failure – first and foremost because the Jets never even attempted to do anything they said they would with Tebow, aside from that brilliant attempt to make him a special teamer.
Yes, that seems to be quite the trend these days – take your marquee name and stuff him in there with the grunts. Everyone does that, right?
Talent evaluations aside and concrete determinations of his ability to play quarterback at the NFL level, Tebow was the featured performer this season for the Jets … only they never featured him – not in any way, unless you consider putting a player on a pedestal and then not have him do anything but stand there and get mocked for what he can’t do as “featured.”
No matter how you slice it, there was no rhyme or reason to the Jets picking him up. Whether head coach Rex Ryan had Tebow forced on him or not is immaterial. The latter was on the roster, he was promoted as a savior at most and a good soldier at minimum, the type of person and personality who could lead the team to something special, just on intangibles alone … and Ryan opted to sit him – play after play, series after series, week after week.
The thinking is that the headlines Tebow created, or influenced, for the Jets in 2012 fall under the “any publicity is a good publicity” category. Reality begs to differ, as the Jets have become a laughingstock of the league.
It got to the point where Tebow, the ultimate “turn the other cheek” athlete, actually stood up for himself, questioned how he was treated and triggered a mass attack on his character in the process. Really? The guy finally voiced his displeasure with being treated as Sideshow Bob in the Jets’ horribly mismanaged eyesore of an NFL circus. The only thing he should be knocked for was in taking so darn long to do so.
There is no great honor in allowing yourself to be treated like crap, especially when you have a say about it.
No doubt, Tebow played a role in the ridiculous proceedings in New York this fall. But he hardly deserves the responsibility of carrying the cross out of town all by his lonesome.
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