- Rich Cimini, ESPN Staff Writer
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Neither Mark Sanchez nor Tim Tebow had an exceptional day on the field Thursday, the second OTA session open to the media, but Sanchez continued to light it up in the classroom, according to Rex Ryan and Tony Sparano.
Both coaches praised Sanchez's work ethic and ability to learn the new offense. In fact, Sparano called him the hardest-working player on offense, which he expects from his starting QB. Ryan said Sanchez exudes leadership in the classroom, claiming that Tebow's larger-than-life presence has had no negative impact on his No. 1 signal caller.
"You talk about leadership and Sanchez," Ryan said. "I think the best thing how Sanchez is leading is in the classroom. Tony will fire out questions, and Sanchez has all the answers. I think that speaks volumes to his teammates. I see that over and over and over again."
Sanchez's leadership, even his work ethic, were called into question after the season, so it's a noteworthy topic. Ryan and Sparano went out of their way to praise him.
Tebow? Both coaches said nice things about him, but they stopped short of full-gush mode. On the field, he had one big moment, hitting rookie WR Stephen Hill on a 50-yard bomb. Hill was open after beating CB Kyle Wilson and made a terrific adjustment on a pass that was slightly behind him.
"I think Tim has a nice touch on his deep ball," Ryan said.
Beyond that one big play, Tebow was so-so. He didn't throw any interceptions, as he did last week during the first open OTA, but he was tentative at times, holding the ball too long in a red-zone drill. Sanchez also didn't have any turnovers (he threw mostly check downs), but he took a "sack" and had a pass batted down at the line.
Neither quarterback was made available to the media.