The public reaction to news that Tim Tebow would sign a deal with the Jacksonville Jaguars to play a close end didn’t mean the Jags got cold feet. Tebow is officially part of the club.
The QB-Turn-TE signed his contract on Thursday morning, announced the team and will train with his teammates outside of the season.
“I would like to thank the Jaguars for the opportunity to compete and have the chance to be part of this team,” said Tebow in a statement. “I know it will be a challenge, but it is a challenge I accept. I am determined to take the direction of our coaching staff and learn from my teammates. I appreciate everyone’s support as I look forward to this new one Go on a journey. “
Jacksonville officially begins OTA training on Monday.
Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network reported earlier last week that the Jags intended to sign Tebow as a close end after training before the draft. The report sparked a firestorm of responses ranging from “Are you Serious?” to “about time” and seemingly every answer in between.
Like many teams years ago before Tebow was washed out of the NFL, the Jags could have decided that the “distraction” for a player who is far from being able to move the roster to a new position could not have been was worth it. Instead, they plow forward.
Coach Urban Meyer – possibly the only man in the NFL who would give Tebow a chance – noted after the NFL Network reported the impending signing that the deal wasn’t set in stone but spoke ardently about Tebow’s transition.
“There is a thought. He was in the best shape of his life and asked if he could train with some of our coaches,” Meyer told the Cris Collinsworth PFF podcast last week. “I haven’t even been there. They came back to me and said, ‘Wow, this guy’s in amazing shape.’ Then I went another time and watched them try it. And they said go work on these things, it’ll come back later. They try it again, I’m not there, they come in and they said, ” Wow this guy is ball arts, he’s a great athlete, he looks like he’s 18 years old, not 20 whatever he is, 33. I said, “Guys, you don’t get it, now this guy’s the one most competitive lunatic you’ve ever met I’ll talk to him and try. ‘”
Try it. And it’s long.
The 33-year-old has achieved an official goal in his brief NFL career. It went predictably incomplete. Now he’s going to try to get himself a job where he mainly catches and blocks the ball.
Tebow has not played in a regular NFL season game with the New York Jets since 2012. He had a cup of coffee in New England (2013) and Philadelphia (2015) before venturing into media and baseball careers.
Now Meyer’s former college quarterback is trying to change positions. Many coaches wish he had tried a decade ago.
Better late than never, as they say.