By getting Tim Tebow the New York Jets have generated a lot of headlines. Fans of the un-traditional quarterback with very traditional values have praised the move and are already calling for him to take Mark Sanchez's starting job, critics have struck back that this is just another attention grabbing move by Gang Green, that will further fuel the chaos of the team's locker room. Beyond generating headlines I actually think the move makes sense from a football standpoint and here's why.
1. Wildcat Time
The Jets offense last season clearly felt the absence of Brad Smith. They tried to make up for that absence by having various players including Jeremy Kerley run the wildcat offense, the results were mixed to poor. Kerley's fast but he's not the same passing threat Smith was and other than a few breakout plays it was an unsuccessful configuration. Tebow is arguably the best player in the NFL to run the wildcat with. He's not as fast as Smith but he's bigger and stronger and a more credible passing threat than Smith was – if used correctly (and with enough passing to keep the defense honest) a Tewbow led Wildcat offense could be a dangerous beast for opposing defenses.
2. Run Time
It's no secret that the Jets coach Rex Ryan and offensive coordinator Tony Sparano want to run the ball...a lot. To do that they need to add some toughness and players who are actually good at running (sorry but a run offense lead by Shonn Greene just isn't scaring anybody but Jet fans). Tebow fits the bill. Right now on paper Tebow (and center Nick Mangold) are pretty much the only bright spots in the Jets run game. The Jets have hinted that they're going to be creative with Tebow and I'd like to see him line up at halfback on occasion with Sanchez still in the game. There are endless run/pass/fake combinations and if done rightly it could be a nightmare for opposing defenses.
3. Tebow will be a calming presence in the locker room.
Despite the fact that Tebow's arrival in New York has already created a media circus, Tebow himself won't be a distraction in the locker room. What ever you think of his in-your-face-religious beliefs Tebow is hard worker, who leads by example and whom teammates of all religious backgrounds love. He may compete with Sanchez for the starting job but he definitely won't leave a huddle pouting like other Jets players have been known to do
4. It will help Sanchez grow up.
Despite what he says Sanchez can't be happy about the Tebow acquisition and my guess is Sanchez is weighing a conversion to Judaism as we speak, however this kind of pressure might just be what Sanchez needs. In his first three years Sanchez never had a credible back-up the starting job was given to him on a silver platter and he earned the nickname the San-chize before he even played a game. If Sanchez does indeed have what it takes to be a starter in the NFL I think the added pressure of having Tebow around will help Sanchez man up and start playing better, if Sanchez doesn't have what it takes he might crumble quickly under the pressure but in that case the Jets now have a viable alternative to him. Like it or not it's Tebow Time in New York City.
What do you think? Was getting Tebow the right move for the Jets?