Tim Tebow Traded? Jets Acquire QB From Broncos For Fourth-Round Pick [UPDATED]
UPDATE: 10:13 PM EST: After a banner day for Tebowmania, the trade between the Jets and the Broncos involving Tim Tebow is being reported as completed.
UPDATE: Shortly after the trade was reported, Adam Schefter tweeted that the deal might fall through due to a "hangup in language in Tim Tebow's contract."
According to Schefter, the trade was agreed upon before the Broncos asked the Jets to pay back a bonus. Despite this issue, Schefter cites a league source who believes the trade will likely go through.
Schefter tweets that the St. Louis Rams and Jacksonville Jaguars are waiting in the wings to swoop in for Tebow if the Broncos-Jets deal comes apart. Earlier this month, the Rams were involved in a blockbuster trade with the Washington Redskins involving draft picks.
Despite this reported negotiating roadblock, the Jets' Facebook page declares that "Jets have agreed in principle on a trade for QB Tim Tebow" and implores fans to "welcome him to the Green & White!" The Jets also tweeted about the deal.
Jay Glazer, who originally reported the Tebow trade, tweeted @AdamSchefter, summing up the confusion surrounding the Broncos-Jets deal.
Tebowmania is coming to the Big Apple. Per Jay Glazer of Fox Sports, the Denver Broncos have traded Tim Tebow to the New York Jets. Glazer initially indicated the Jets were sending a fourth-round draft pick to Denver in exchange for Tebow but Jason La Canfora of NFL.com later reported that the Jets sent a fourth-round pick and a sixth-round pick to Denver in exchange for Tebow and a seventh-round pick.
The possible Tebow trade comes less than 24 hours after the Broncos introduced quarterback Peyton Manning at a press conference in Denver. Even before the ink was dry on Manning's five-year deal with the Broncos, there were various reports about Tebow being traded.
The Jacksonville Jaguars were among the first teams reportedly interested in acquiring the run-first quarterback who took the NFL by storm during the 2011 season with a string of thrilling comeback wins. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Miami and Green Bay were both interested in Tebow, too.
Although Schefter initially been described the Jets as a "longshot" to acquire Tebow, it was later reported by Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News that the team's interest in the quarterback was legitimate.
On Tuesday evening, WKMG Sports Director David Pingalore in Orlando cited a source close to the player saying that the suitors had been narrowed to the Jets and Jaguars.
Before the Broncos landed Manning, the Jets had indicated interest in the four-time NFL MVP. New York signalled the close of its pursuit of Manning by signing quarterback Mark Sanchez to an extension.
"I'm going to be the starting quarterback for the next few years here, and that's exciting," Sanchez said during a conference call with reporters shortly after his deal was announced. "It gives the team just a reminder that I'm the leader of this team."
While the arrival of Manning in New York -- and just about anywhere outside of Foxboro, New Orleans and Green Bay -- would have shuffled up the depth chart, it remains unclear what the Jets' plans are for Sanchez and Tebow. Would Tebow be used in the "wildcat" formation, similar to the way the team deployed dual-threat Brad Smith before he decamped for Buffalo before last season? Would Tebow compete with Sanchez for the starting role? Or would Tebow settle into a traditional back-up role that is not predicated on gadget formations?
Despite helping the Jets to reach the AFC Championship Game in 2010 and 2011, Sanchez endured heavy criticism last season, becoming a lightning rod for fans and teams as the Jets struggled down the stretch. A feud between Sanchez and wide receiver Santonio Holmes spilled into public view during the team's final game of the season, a loss in Miami that dropped the team to 8-8. Although Jets owner Woody Johnson eventually came out in defense of his 25-year-old signal caller, 2012 was set to be a make or break campaign for Sanchez even before Tebowmania was set to arrive in town.
Tebow, of course, would arrive at the Jets' facility in Florham Park, NJ as one of the most polarizing figures in the NFL. Slotted as the third quarterback on the Denver Broncos' depth chart at the opening of the last season, Tebow emerged from the sideline -- overcoming starter Kyle Orton and second-stringer Brady Quinn -- to become one of the most talked about athletes in the world. Known as much for his devout religious views as his terrestrial style of play, Tebow's football talents and cultural significance were debated endlessly as the Broncos won seven of the first eight games started by the former Heisman Trophy winner. Tebow faced the Jets during Week 11 of the 2011 season and produced a stat line and result that was indicative of his season. Despite struggling mightily against the Jets' defense throughout the bulk of the game, Tebow orchestrated a game-winning drive late in the fourth quarter, scoring on a 20-yard run in the final minute. Although the Broncos sputtered down the stretch, they clinched the AFC West and managed a shocking upset win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in the playoffs.
On Tuesday evening, Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie tweeted his thoughts about his team's reported interest in Tebow
Not surprisingly, Cromartie was not the only person to share their feelings about the deal -- both before and after it was first reported -- via Twitter. Here are some other notable reactions.