by Jason Comack
If the Jets brought in Tim Tebow to be Brad Smith it's a great fit. After all the ex-Jet Smith was a fourth round pick, a jack of all trades and the Jets got a lot of mileage out of him during his five year run with the team. Tebow could be a special teams maven, a short yardage back, a pass catching tight end and of course a “wildcat” QB.
The key word there is could.
Being a utility guy is fine when your Joe McEwing, but it doesn't work when your Tim Tebow.
Tebow is the most polarizing athlete of our generation. He's both beloved and hated for his morals and religious background. He's as likely to be called a winner as he is an arrogant prick. Tebowing even become an adverb widely accepted in today’s lexicon. It's because of these things that Tebow can't be judged on the same scale that any other developing quarterback would be. He's either a winner or a disgrace to the quarterback position. In Tim Tebow's world shades of gray do not exist.
Which is why this move has more downside then is does upside.
Tim Tebows presence doesn't serve as a shot across Mark Sanchez's brow. It serves as a looming guillotine, where the media and fans will cry for the presence of Tebow to act as Robespierre and be Mark Sanchez's executioner. The first bad pass Mark Sanchez throws, the first time the Jets lose a game, the hot button topic on every sports radio show is going to be; should the Jets bench Sanchez.
Acquiring a quarterback for the sole purposes of gimmick packages means you must not be satisfied with your starting quarterback. This is why Eli Manning, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Drew Brees never come off the field. If the Jets wanted to upgrade over Sanchez that's fine and dandy but of course this is the same front office that felt it fit to extend Sanchez's contract (all but guaranteeing him a roster spot in 2013) this off-season. Mark Sanchez can't be your guy and Tim Tebow can't be your guy. Eventually Mike Tannenbaum is going to have to choose a favorite child.
Of course this all comes down to headline grabbing, something the Jets love to do. When you start making decisions based on the back page, rather then a page in the playbook it's a bad sign for the long term outlook of your organization. It's not that Tebow can't work in the role the Jets define for him, it's just that the Jets want it both ways. They want Tebow's locker room presence, they want his leadership and they want Tebow to be a "winner." However, it's impossible for those things to occur if he's just a backup.
When Mike Tannenbaum says the Jets have a defined role for Tebow he's talking out of one side of his mouth. What he can't say publicly is that defined role is subject to change, rather soon and rather drastically. He can't say he doesn't have total faith in Sanchez. After all Tannenbaum drafted him, failed to develop him and gave him a pity extension when Manning spurned the Jets. If Tannenbaum admitted that was all true maybe the guillotine would be about to be dropped on his head and not Mark Sanchez's.