Monday, March 19, 2012
No, your team should not trade for Tebow
By Dan Graziano
I have to give you guys credit. After the news broke that Eli Manning's brother had found a new job, along with the news that the Broncos would now try to trade Tim Tebow, I didn't hear from very many of you. Normally, when a player arrives on the market, I get Twitter queries within five minutes from fans of all four of our teams, asking whether their team should or will pursue said player. But today, not much. The one Redskins one I got was later explained as sarcastic by the person who asked it (silly me for not figuring that out immediately), and I've had a couple of people ask whether it'd be worth it for the Eagles to bring him in as a long-term project behind Michael Vick. But that's it.
Anyway, the answer is no. Whichever team is your favorite in the NFC East should not be trying to trade for Tebow. To wit:
- The Redskins don't need the headache of crazed Tebow fans screaming and putting up billboards saying he should start the first time Robert Griffin III has a bad game.
- The Eagles need as little controversy as possible, and no matter how hard they may work to portray Tebow as a long-term project, you know the same thing would happen there if Michael Vick started to struggle.
- The Cowboys just signed a three-year deal with Kyle Orton to be their backup, and it wouldn't surprise me if it included language guaranteeing that Orton never had to hear Tebow's name again as long as he lives.
- The Giants? No.
Remember this about Tebow: His success as a Bronco came after the team decided to completely structure its offense around him, accentuating his strengths and minimizing his weaknesses (i.e., actually throwing the ball). The Broncos had no established receivers that were going to kick about such a decision, a veteran running back who was totally on board and a flexible, open-minded coach who was willing to consider an outside-the-box option as possibly better than the offense he preferred to run.
There isn't a team in the NFC East that remotely fits that description.
And finally, Tebow's not a free agent. This isn't a situation in which you could sign him to a low-risk, incentive-based deal and benefit if he blossomed but not suffer in the short-term if he didn't. You'd have to trade something of value for Tebow, who'd come with a contract he got as a result of being a first-round pick. Who in this division (heck, who in any division) can say it's worth spending real resources on a quarterback who might never be an NFL-caliber thrower.
Tebow is, obviously, a fine young man and would be a great guy to have on a team. I think the Broncos should keep him, use him as a backup quarterback and design some interesting offensive sub packages around him. But the Broncos already have him, and whatever they've invested in getting him is a sunk cost. For a team to trade something to get Tebow would appear to be a mistake at this point, and it certainly wouldn't make sense for anyone in the NFC East.