New York Jets get over stumbling block, acquire Tim Tebow for fourth- and sixth-round picks

By Adam Silverstein
March 21, 2012

Updated at 11:30 p.m.

One day after Peyton Manning officially signed a five-year, $96 million contract with the Denver Broncos, the team has traded third-year quarterback Tim Tebow (along with a seventh-round pick) to the New York Jets for a fourth- and sixth-round pick.

Tebow, who started the final 13 games of the 2011 season (including two playoff games), went 8-5 for Denver, winning four overtime games and two others in come-from-behind style. He only completed 46.5 percent of his passes in the regular season but threw for 12 touchdowns with six interceptions while also carrying the ball 122 times for 660 yards and six more scores. He added 316 yards (on 10-of-21 passing) with two touchdowns against Pittsburgh in the first round of the playoffs but went just 9-for-26 for 136 yards with no scores in the second round against New England.

One of those come-from-behind victories was a 17-13 win over New York in Denver where Tebow led his squad on a 12-play, 95-yard scoring drive capped by his own 20-yard rushing touchdown with the clock winding down late in the fourth quarter.

Reports broke Tuesday night that the Jets’ interest in Tebow had “intensified” and that New York was legitimately interested in adding him to their roster. Initially it was believed that the Jets wanted to bring him on board to help heal a badly divided locker room, but reports Wednesday morning noted that the team’s interest in him was solely from a football perspective.

New York and Denver agreed to a trade for Tebow early Wednesday afternoon but a snag in Tebow’s contract – an advance payment the Broncos made to him of approximately $5 million that the contract stipulated would be recalled to the team – caused the Jets to stall in finalizing the agreement.

Denver advanced Tebow $1.43 million for the 2012 season, $1.69 million for 2013 and $1.92 for 2014 (according to the Denver Post), all of which the contract stipulated that any team that traded for him would have to pay back as part of the deal.

With Tebow’s future up in the air, the Jacksonville Jaguars reentered the picture and attempted to get in between the agreement. However, the Jets finalized their trade for Tebow around 9 p.m., agreeing to pay half ($2.5 million) of the sum.

ESPN‘s Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen each reported separately that Tebow was actually given an option between the two teams as the evening approached. However, Tebow denied that in a conference call late Wednesday night.

“Ultimately I didn’t really have any [options],” he said. “The Broncos had all of that power.”

Some see Tebow as a good fit in New York because of new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano, who coached Tebow in the Senior Bowl and is known to run the Wildcat offense at times. Head coach Rex Ryan, who has a defense-first mindset and prefers a power running game, also probably likes what Tebow can potentially do for the team in goal-line and short-yardage situations.

However, there are also some obvious drawbacks to this acquisition.

Two jets players – cornerback Antonio Cromartie and linebacker Bart Scott – have been exceptionally critical of Tebow over the past year. Additionally, quarterback Mark Sanchez – who just received a three-year extension including $20.5 million in guarantees – is in need of competition but certainly not the mountain of added pressure that “Tebowmania” brings with it. Sanchez has been described as “fragile” and putting that much pressure on him could do the opposite of what the coaching staff intends.

Not only could New York be asking a backup quarterback to be a locker room leader (perhaps even “savior” in some respects), Tebow would be trying to fill that role in a dysfunctional environment with a notoriously boisterous head coach and under even more intense media scrutiny than he is used to in normal circumstances.

Other teams that expressed interest in acquiring Tebow included Green Bay, Jacksonville and St. Louis. There were at least one or two other offers on the table.

OGGOA will update this breaking story shortly.


  1. SC Gator says:

    Like I care what a Nole who can’t even keep track of all his kids – or their mothers – thinks about anything.

  2. Nathaniel says:

    This. Is. Terrible.

  3. Joe says:

    AS – does this kill you inside as much as it kills me? TT a jet, say it ain’t so!!!

  4. John S says:

    Maybe I need to make a “Football Decision” about my Jags. Maybe they are the door mat that every “football expert” thinks they are. Maybe they are the worst franchise in the NFL. Maybe our offense is the worst in the league because we have the worst offensive players in the league. Maybe I don’t need to care about you because you’re not relevant.

    Just football comments don’t take it personally fellow Jag fans and management.

  5. Aligator says:

    Tebow will take the Job away from Mark Sanchez at some point over the next year … Tebow will not be denied. In the nicest possible way of course …

  6. Gatorgrad79 says:

    Cromartie is an ignorant fool…and apparently suffers from insecurity issues….

  7. Eileen says:

    I hate the Jets and Love Tim Tebow! I’m feeling so conficted. I’m glad he will be playing somewhere, because he is a competitor and he loves the game… why the jets 🙁

  8. Andrew says:

    John Elway hates Tim Tebow. That’s the only explanation. Trade away his #1 WR the week before he starts, then send him to the worst possible team for him, all because you had a shot at a guy that just came off multiple neck surgeries and was let go by his former team for a draft pick they haven’t even taken yet. Elway needs to look at the stat comparison between himself and Tebow early on and realize that he just gave up on a guy that out performed him with less talent around him. Great move.

    • goldengator says:

      I don’t think Elway hates Tebow, I just think he’s heartless when it comes to football. He felt adding Peyton Manning was best for his team and that a 4th round pick from the Jets is better than a 5th from, say Jacksonville.

      With that said, it doesn’t make me like him anymore since he made this business decision without regard for the man (Tebow) who made the Broncos a boat load of money over the past two years. Tebow deserved more from the Bronco organization and Elway only acted in a selfish manner.

  9. Ken (CA) says:

    I don’t understand why the Jets would have any interest at all in Tebow, especially with this timing, they just resigned Sanchez and last week signed a backup as well. Unless they have no faith in ether and think Tebow will be effective, Elways seems to have effectively crushed Tebow’s carrer, but never count him out to rise above it.

    I think Tebow really hurt Elway’s massive ego by having been forced to put him in by the fans and (gasp) actually being successful, proving that maybe Elway and Fox did have it wrong. I think this is his way of getting back at him just for working hard and doing his best. There seems to be nothing here but spite on his part.

  10. goldengator says:

    I generally don’t make a point of feeling bad for men who play sports and make millions for a living, but I really feel for Tebow in this situation. This is not ideal, at all, for him. Rex Ryan is a FAR cry from the kind of man Tebow likes to play for. Mark Sanchez is not superior to Tebow as a passer and personally I feel Tebow will deserve to start over him, but won’t. Several Jets player have been openly critical of Tebow and the guy is walking into a fractured locker room without the authority to take a leadership role and turn it around.

    What I think hurts most is the idea of Tebow playing a niche role will only help to set in stone the belief that Tebow can’t throw the football. It will, yet again, give analysts like Hoge and McShay the pulpit to openly criticize his worth as an NFL QB.

    One thing is certain, Tebow will work very hard to get better and he will find success. Hopefully that success is in the form of a winning 80yrd TD pass in the playoffs against the Broncos. 😉

    • g8ter27 says:

      They should change the logo on the helmet to Elway’s head…looks more like a horse than the current one.

    • Gatorgrad79 says:

      Rex Ryan is a far cry from the kind of man Tebow likes playing for…?! You mean like the Meyer Liar?? Maybe they are the same…Meyer just lies and Ryan is an open jerk.

  11. gator says:

    Elmo is such a jerk,that human can opener can go lick-it.break-a-leg peyton

  12. John S says:

    The update makes me hold out hope, I know it’s too late,but I want my bad team to take a gamble for once to actually matter.

  13. John S says:

    Damn it, more developments make it sound like the Jags have a chance, false hopes are raising again.

  14. Ken (CA) says:

    Not sure why Jax would balk at 5 million to pay for him…probably make that up in the very first home game that they sell out rather than have 12 people in the stands…

    Don’t know how successful he would be with Jax, though, I don’t know much about their personnel at all other than they are a really bad team with a completely inept front office. If the owner really wanted him I am sure they could make the money work, but there was a comment earlier in the week where the GM said didn’t care what the owner wanted, they had no interest in Tebow at all, so who knows.

    • John S. says:

      Jax has an excellent defense, great place kicker, strong running game and the worst QB and receivers in the league. Jets have talent but are a cluster…

      Would have started jax day one though with forgiving fans.

  15. dave says:

    elway and broncos execs are all punks who didnt know a good thing when they saw it. if they have the same o line and receivers and backs next year manning will be on a stretcher before elway can pig out on another plate of his overpriced restaurants slop. tim got too much class for the jets or the city in general. hopefully he improves his craft while there and moves on to a good team in the near future, good luck tim, dont let the jets depravity bring you down. its like sending daniel into the lions den.

    • Ken (CA) says:

      my boss is actually a good friend of Reeves, I found out today, he was saying Elway was a complete **** you fill in the blanks with any bad description you feel apropriate…

      So what seemed like spite to me in an earlier post seems confirmed. The ego was busted. When I posted it, it was just my feeling, but I didnt know my boss actually was good friends with some insiders in Denver, and it appears that most think Elway is a complete egotistical Ass, and actually has little respect from others.

      Tebow showed him up by being solid and doing his thing by working hard and just doing his best and Elway couldnt take it, since he never thought Tebow was the right answer to Denver….Manning gave him an out that the fans would accept…

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