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NFL Draft

Pros & Cons of Jaguars Officially Signing Tim Tebow

  • The Draft Network
  • May 20, 2021
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The Jacksonville Jaguars franchise has been in disarray in recent years—from issues in the front office to the poor product on the field. After cleaning house this offseason, owner Shad Khan wanted to make a splashy hire to reinvigorate the fan base. He hired Urban Meyer in January and officially signed Tim Tebow on Thursday. Many suspected this could be possible when Tebow abruptly retired from baseball in February. At the time, he said, “…At this time, I feel called in other directions.” That “call” wouldn’t have had to come from far away, as Tebow ironically calls Jacksonville his home. 

Both Meyer and Tebow are somewhat legendary in the Jacksonville area from their major accomplishments together while at the University of Florida. However, what are the pros and cons of the Jaguars signing Tebow?

First, let’s look at the potential positive outcome from signing Tebow. It should be noted that Tebow will turn 34 in August and will be trying a new position, tight end. Neither history nor age is on his side. However, if the goal is to reinvigorate a fan base and sell more tickets/suites, Tebow will definitely allow you to do that. He was lauded at Florida for his outstanding work ethic and leadership, among other things. However, in the NFL and most competitive sports, your best players are often your best leaders. As someone fighting for a bottom of the roster position, one of his best attributes would be null and void. 

For me, the potential negative outcome could far outweigh the positive. Let’s be honest, none of us really expect Tebow to “set the world on fire” at tight end. The game has evolved and most of the highly effective tight ends are more explosive and dynamic than Tebow ever was. 

Let’s look at Kyle Pitts from this year’s draft. He was 6-foot-6, 245 pounds, and ran a 4.4s 40-yard dash. Tebow was 6-foot-3, 236 pounds, and ran in the 4.8s range—and he was in his athletic prime when he posted these numbers. Players know good players, and if Tebow is believed to be on the roster simply because of his relationship with the head coach, Meyer runs the risk of losing all credibility in the locker room. That would be the last thing this franchise needs. The organization just endured years of dysfunction and could ill afford any more. 

Furthermore, one of Meyer’s early hires was strength coach Chris Doyle. Doyle was fired by the University of Iowa for his racially biased behavior toward athletes. The response to the Doyle hire was so swift and effective that Doyle resigned less than two days after his hiring was officially announced. The lesson here: you ultimately cannot fool players. 

Meyer was wildly successful in college, but he hasn’t won a single game in the NFL. So far, he hasn’t done himself any favors with regards to convincing the locker room that they can believe in him. If he doesn’t win early, you can expect these issues to be magnified.

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