All day long I’ve been hearing why the New York Jets and their trade for Denver Broncos QB Tim Tebow makes no sense. They already have a starting QB, whom they just gave an extension, Tebow wants to be a starter, the Jets have other issues, etc.
What I haven’t heard much of is why the trade makes sense for a Jets team that was anemic offensively in 2011. I see the trade working on three levels.
They ranked 25th in the NFL in terms of total yards per game, and surprisingly 22nd in rushing yards per game, which was supposed to be the Jets’ strong point.
You could point a finger at the offensive line. You could point a finger at the aging of LaDainian Tomlinson. You could point the finger at Brian Schottenheimer’s play calling.
Or you could point the finger at the loss of Brad Smith and, as as result of that, the reduction of their effectiveness with the Wildcat offense. Enter Tim Tebow.
OK, so Tebow is not the best passer in the world, but let him run the Wildcat offense and he could be an incredible weapon for the Jets. Running Denver’s option style offense, Tebow had 622 rushing yards in 11 starts.
Tony Sparano has been brought in to be the Jets’ new offensive coordinator. He was the head coach of the Dolphins team that started using the Wildcat with Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams. Imagine how effective the offense will be with someone who can actually throw the ball down field?
Another reason this trade makes sense is the effect it will have on Mark Sanchez, who is the starting quarterback any way you look at it. Tebow is not coming in to replace a guy who just got $20.5 million guaranteed.
However, with some help from fans wanting Tebow to start in his place, Sanchez could find motivation he never had with Mark Brunell as his back up all this time.
Brunell has a daughter in college for crying out loud. The man is past his prime to say the least.
One way to look at the situation is to see how Drew Brees performed after the San Diego Chargers drafted Phillip Rivers. From 2003 to 2004 (year Rivers was drafted), Brees’ QB rating went from 67.5 to 104.8.
Think he wasn’t trying to keep his job?
The final reason the trade makes some sense is that it could help bring together a locker room void of leadership. Despite someone like Antonio Cromartie already voicing his concerns over this move, Tebow’s work ethic, professionalism, and leadership on the field could help rejuvenate a team that went to the AFC championship in the first two years under Rex Ryan.
The team was a mess in 2011, and it started last spring at the combine when Ryan guaranteed the Jets would win the Super Bowl..again. Obviously that didn’t happen, and the Jets faltered down the stretch with a chance to make the playoffs.
It didn’t end there. The locker room was torn apart even further with guys criticizing Mark Sanchez anonymously, players speaking out trying to get Peyton Manning, and now some players already talking bad about Tebow.
Once they see how he conducts himself, and the weapon he can be, they will come around.
This move makes sense on many levels, more so than it not making sense.