The Patriots have signed the ultimate no-risk contract with Tim Tebow.
Not only is there (as widely expected) no guaranteed money on Tebow’s new deal, but according to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Tebow’s deal is for two years.
In other words, there’s really nothing that can go wrong for the Patriots: If Tebow shows in training camp and the preseason that he isn’t good enough, the Patriots will cut him, having spent nothing. If Tebow shows promise this year, they can keep him into next year without having to deal with all the questions about whether or not he’ll stay into 2014, which would have come up if they had signed him to a one-year deal.
There’s also the possibility, admittedly unlikely, that Tebow could show enough in New England this season that he’ll have some trade value next year, and the Patriots could get something for him in 2014. That’s one of the reasons it’s nice for the Patriots to have him signed to a two-year deal. (The last time a Patriots backup quarterback made himself a valuable commodity, it was Matt Cassel, who was in the last year of his contract and got the franchise tag before getting traded to the Chiefs.)
The structure of the contract also demonstrates just how little a market for Tebow there was around the NFL: This isn’t the kind of contract a player signs if he has other offers.