- Matt Ehalt, ESPN New York contributor
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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Tim Tebow isn’t giving the Wildcat package rave reviews.
The backup quarterback has rarely been used through the team’s first eight games, playing just 55 offensive snaps, and acknowledged there's been some ups and downs as he's tried to mesh into the offense. The Jets primarily use Tebow in the package and he’s rushed for just 78 yards this season.
“I feel like there's times we’ve done some good things, times it definitely hasn’t been as effective as I would have liked it sometimes,” Tebow said. “I feel like we’ve had some good plays now and then.
“Still got half the season to go, just try to get it better.”
When the Jets acquired Tebow and had their secret practices with him running the Wildcat, it was expected to become a big component of the team’s offensive attack. Instead, Tebow has become more of an asset on special teams as he's struggled to fit into the offense. He’s rushed just 23 times and has thrown just three passes.
As the team was installing the packages during training camp, Tebow said it was hard to know what exactly his role in the offense would be this season. He’s averaging less than seven offensive snaps a game and has yet to score a touchdown on the season after tallying 18 total scores last year.
“It was hard to try to picture what was going to happen, how it was all going to mesh,” Tebow said. “It was tough to try to know exactly what to expect.”
Tebow added that it's harder to get a feel for the offense when his snaps are limited.
"I think when you're getting the ball a lot during the game you can get the rhythm of the game and I think that makes it easier," Tebow said. "You get a feel and a rhythm. I think spot play is fun because you're in different roles, but at the same time it's hard to get a feel. Sometime even if it's just a few plays on a drive, it gets easier. Sometimes that's the harder part of spot playing, but it is fun. I just love playing period."
Heading into last week’s bye, Rex Ryan said he would be looking deeper into Tebow’s role within the offense and how they might be able to use him more. Wednesday, he seemed to backtrack from that comment, saying it wasn’t the smartest thing for him to say, and later adding that he wouldn’t divulge how the team plans to incorporate Tebow into the game plan going forward.
Tebow, who wasn’t aware of the comments, said he hasn’t been talked to directly about his role and an expansion entering the final eight games. Tebow has the third-most carries on the team but is averaging just 3.4 yards per carry and has a long run of just 22 yards. He’s completed 2-of-3 throws for 32 yards.
“We still have our packages in, different ones, based on the game plan,” Tebow said. “I think for that it’s based on when we are going to call them, what’s the right time, everything like that.”
The Jets enter Sunday’s game seemingly needing a win to avoid falling to 3-6, and to stay in playoff contention in the AFC. Tebow said he wishes he could help make a difference while the team is losing, but once again reiterated that he’s ready to help out in whatever role the team asks of him.
“I think any time that you lose as a competitor it’s always frustrating and disappointing and you want to do something to help and to make a difference,” Tebow said. “Always trying to be ready and willing to create a spark and do something. It’s always difficult to lose no matter what your role is, no matter where you’re at. It’s always something that’s frustrating and disappointing. I think the biggest thing for us is not looking back at that, it’s constantly moving forward, one day at a time.”