Jets quarterback Tim Tebow has acknowledged that he was upset when he learned last week that he had been bypassed on the depth chart by Greg McElroy. Now Tebow says his goal now is to become a good quarterback — somewhere — in 2013.
Tebow told ESPN’s Adam Schefter he is “more determined than ever to dedicate my entire off-season to becoming the best quarterback I can be next season.”
Regarding the ESPNNewYork.com report that Tebow told Jets coach Rex Ryan he didn’t want to play in the Wildcat after he was informed that McElroy would start in place of the benched Mark Sanchez, Tebow admitted that he was upset, and he expressed his displeasure to Ryan. Schefter’s report does not specify, however, whether Tebow flat-out refused to play in the Wildcat when he found out on Tuesday that McElroy was starting, or whether Tebow merely said he was unhappy that he wasn’t getting the opportunity to start.
Whatever transpired between Tebow and Ryan, Tebow did tell Schefter that on Friday he told Ryan that he was willing to do whatever it took to help the team win. By that time, the Jets had been planning to use receiver Jeremy Kerley in the Wildcat role, and that’s what they did in Sunday’s game against the Chargers.
The fact that Tebow even had to express to Ryan that he was willing to do anything to help the team win is telling. If a player is conducting himself the right way, it should go without saying that he is willing to do whatever he has to do to help his team win. If the Jets’ coaches needed to be reassured that Tebow was willing to do whatever he had to do to help the team win, that strongly suggests that Tebow isn’t quite the humble, hard-working player that he tries to portray himself as. The job of a football player is to play football the way his coaches tell him to play. It doesn’t matter if Tebow thinks he deserves to start ahead of McElroy. The Jets’ coaches decided that McElroy was the starter for Sunday’s game, and Tebow’s job was to support the team in whatever role the coaches told him to play.
If Tebow ever expressed anything other than a firm commitment to doing whatever the coaches asked him to do, then he’s no better than Santonio Holmes, who was widely ripped last year for being a destructive force in the Jets’ locker room. Holmes was pilloried all offseason for the way he acted at the end of the Jets’ season in 2011. If Tebow is acting the same way at the end of the Jets’ season in 2012, he deserves the same scorn.
As for Tebow’s ambitions of being a starter next year, well, good luck with that. There is exactly one NFL team that might be willing to give Tebow a shot, and that team — Jacksonville — would be willing to give him a shot for business reasons, not for football reasons. Tebow is desired in Jacksonville because he’s viewed as a good guy, not a good football player. And the news of the last 24 hours suggests that he’s actually not that good a guy.