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Tim Tebow to the Jets Is a Bad Idea

There are many cases where the splashy move is the wrong move. When I look at the possibility of the Jets acquiring Tim Tebow, there are many different angles to the potential move, but I find few of them attractive. While a trade for Tebow would make the back pages explode, dominate ESPN, and lead to a blizzard of jersey sales, I cannot see whre the move would markedly improve the team the one area where it counts, on the field.

Yes, Tebow would provide "competition" for Mark Sanchez. Sanchez would feel some heat for the first time in his career. Like many others, I wanted the Jets to bring in somebody to compete with him. That was about much more than motivation, though. Yes, bringing in a quarterback might light a fire under Sanchez, but there was a more practical reason. The way Sanchez played hurt the Jets in 2011. The team needed to be ready to plug in somebody who could play better if there was no improvement.

Tim Tebow is not a better player than Mark Sanchez on his best day. Sanchez right now is an average to below average quarterback but one who has displayed some upside. Tebow is a really, really, really bad quarterback. He cannot hit routine throws. He had an unfathomable 46% completion percentage. Yes, he is a much better runner than most quarterbacks, but that does not make up for his extreme deficiencies throwing the ball by a long shot. Forget about him reading a defense. Sure, he's a "winner" who had clutch drives. Want to know a secret, though? The only reason he needed to put together clutch drives was he was beyond dreadful for the first three quarters in a lot of his wins. An average quarterback in his comeback wins against Miami, Chicago, and the Jets would have won those games with breathing room. He caught any number of breaks from his defense playing brilliantly to opponents making critical mistakes to his kicker connecting on a field goal from over 60 yards. ESPN did not want you to notice, but Tebow was so bad in three of his last four games that his team had absolutely no chance to win.

This is a problem because the second Sanchez has a bad game, there will be an incredible amount of pressure on Rex Ryan from talk radio, ESPN, and many fans calling for Tebow to play. At best, it will cause a huge distraction. At worst, the publicity seeking owner gets involved and suggests putting one of the biggest stars on the planet in at starting quarteback. You can say the Jets should list Tebow as a tight end on a depth chart, but that is not going to stop people from calling for him. Doing this creates a quarterback controversy when the replacement is significantly worse.

Can't the Jets just make him a tight end? Sure, but he probably will not cut it there. Just because a guy has the physical stature to play a position does not mean he will be any good at it. Tebow would have to learn technique at a new position from scratch. He will have to get used to blocking linemen, reading coverages, and making catches. Want to move him somewhere else? Replace what I mentioned for tight end with basic skills for that other position. Every year we see athletic college quarterbacks get selected in the Draft and changed to a different position. Most of them fail. Brad Smith was big enough to play wide receiver. He was deceptively fast. He never became a good route runner or developed hands. Position changes from quarterback are easier said than done?

Could Tebow be a good Wildcat quarterback? Sure, just like a new radio would be a great addition to your car. What if you were lacking a right front tire and only had enough money to either get the radio or the tire? The Jets are in the same situation. They still have a ton of holes and are strapped for cash. Tebow might not be too expensive, but he will take up cap space and scant resources the Jets need for other places. Beyond this, the Jets have a pretty good radio right now in Jeremy Kerley. He just hit a 40 yard pass from the Wildcat in the last game the Jets played. From watching him throw, I think you can make a case he throws a better ball than Tebow. A Wildcat quarterback is a luxury. A second one is beyond luxury. The Jets need to focus on the essentials right now.

Everything about a Tebow trade screams, "Bad decision!" Why the Jets are entertaining this is beyond me.