BOSTON (CBS) — The Tim Tebow sweepstakes is on in earnest, and a surprise team is entering the fray. That team is the New York Jets.
“Their interest in Tebow is sincere and legitimate, according to a former league executive with knowledge of their intentions, and it provides a fascinating glimpse into the thinking of an organization that endured as many problems last season on offense as it did in the locker room,” the Times’ Ben Shpigel reported.
The news comes on the heels of the Jets signing quarterback Mark Sanchez to an extension, after the team reportedly tried to acquire free-agent quarterback Peyton Manning, whose signing in Denver opens up Tebow’s availability to the rest of the league. (Jets owner Woody Johnson later said the team simply “passed” on Manning.)
Even if the ongoing quarterback musical chairs lands Tebow in New York, it may not be strictly for football purposes. Jets sources have indicated to reporters that Tebow’s presence in the locker room is a factor in the Jets’ interest, as the team had its fair share of issues last season that carried into the offseason.
That still might not be pleasant for Sanchez to hear, as the team’s reported interest in Manning and now Tebow could affect the quarterback’s confidence.
Last season, Sanchez completed 56.7 percent of his passes for 3,474 yards, 26 touchdowns and 18 interceptions. In five fewer starts, Tebow completed 46.5 percent of his passes for 1,729 yards, 12 touchdowns and six interceptions. Tebow led the Broncos to a last-minute win over the Jets in Week 11.
The Jaguars are another team showing serious interest in acquiring Tebow via trade, according to reports.