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Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Playing-time analysis: QB/RB

By Rich Cimini

To wrap up the season, we've been reviewing the snap counts for every unit. Here's a breakdown of quarterbacks and running backs (based on a total of 1,076, according to the official NFL stats):

QUARTERBACK

Mark Sanchez: 940 snaps/87 percent
Greg McElroy: 90 snaps/8 percent
Tim Tebow: 73 snaps/7 percent

Analysis: You could've made a lot of money if you bet someone in August that McElroy would have more snaps than Tebow. That one stat pretty much summarizes the entire season at quarterback. ... Before the season, then-GM Mike Tannenbaum estimated Tebow would play anywhere from 10 to 20 percent of the snaps. Tebow missed out on a lucrative playing-time incentive. Based on his rookie contract, he would've received a $5 million increase next season and a $6.25 million bump in 2014 if he played in at least 55 percent of the offensive plays. Oh, well.

RUNNING BACK

Shonn Greene: 569 snaps/53 percent
Bilal Powell: 387 snaps/36 percent
Lex Hilliard: 271 snaps/25 percent
Joe McKnight: 58 snaps/5 percent
John Conner: 52 snaps/5 percent
Jonathan Grimes: 11 snaps/1 percent
Kahlil Bell: 3 plays/0.2 percent

Analysis: No major surprises here -- well, except maybe for McKnight's paltry role. Many people figured he'd be more of a factor. ... Powell probably would've stolen more of Greene's playing time if he had remained healthy. ... Oh, yes, remember the Terminator? That was Rex Ryan's draft pick in 2010, as he was fond of telling us during the "Hard Knocks" craze. Conner didn't work out too well and was waived. Ditto, Grimes and Bell.