His signing with the New England Patriots made headlines, but Tim Tebow has been an afterthought ever since. His performance in practice is said to be horrible, and judging by the evidence in two of the Patriots preseason games (he didn’t play in the last tilt), it’s not much better. Even though Tebow offers excellent mobility, shedding tackles and making plays in the open field, he has simply not shown enough throwing the football to justify a roster spot. And for those who think Tebow can make it as a running back or tight end, think again. It takes time to learn a new position, and he hasn’t been practicing at either of those positions.
It’s not like carrying two quarterbacks is a novel idea for Bill Belichick. He did it last season and has done it multiple times in the past. The only real drawback of doing so is if the quarterbacks on one’s roster are injury-prone. Tom Brady is certainly not, having never missing a game outside of the 2008 season (torn ACL). Ryan Mallett hasn’t played much during the regular season, but he still has never had any significant injury history, which alleviates most concerns of him getting hurt (though anything can happen).
There are far too many interesting positional battles going on to waste a spot on Tebow. One that strikes my mind is the battle going on at running back. Here we have four talented running backs: Stevan Ridley, Shane Vereen, LeGarrette Blount and Brandon Bolden. Not to mention there’s Leon Washington, who can return a kickoff for a touchdown at any time. All of those players are useful, so why not keep them as depth?
The next question would be “what should Belichick do with Tebow?” Well, I think the practice squad makes sense. Every other general manager had a shot to claim Tebow off waivers or even sign him, and they passed. If that’s not evidence that none of the other 31 GMs wants to bring Tebow in, then I don’t know what is. So there isn’t much drawback to placing Tebow on waivers again, with there being a distinctly high chance that he will clear them and make the practice squad.
Simply put, Tebow has to improve to make the active roster. His performance with the Denver Broncos was extraordinary considering how raw he was at that the time, but that was a long time ago. He hasn’t played a significant role at QB ever since then, so his raw skills have become even more raw. To me, that just screams “practice squad player.” If Belichick ever wants to use a third QB, then it should be on someone who has performed better in the preseason. Trust me, there will be plenty of those type of players available on waivers and in free agency once final cuts come to pass.