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A group of Jacksonville Jaguars fans held a rally Monday in the EverBank Field parking lot that began at 3:16 p.m. ET to encourage the team to sign free-agent quarterback Tim Tebow, a former Heisman Trophy winner from the University of Florida.
The rally was scheduled to last three hours and 16 minutes. The starting time of the rally and the planned duration are nods to a bible verse, John 3:16, which Tebow had inscribed on his eye black for the 2009 BCS title game.
James Stewart, a 56-year-old Jacksonville native and Jaguars fan who is one of the event's organizers, said about 20 people participated in the rally, while 30 media members covered the event. The group now also has a volunteer to make signs and bumper stickers and have someone to handle its Twitter account in an attempt to publicize its Tebow campaign.
"We've accomplished what we had hoped for the first time out," Stewart told ESPN.com.
Stewart said that Monday's rally likely would be the first of many. He said he expects to have a rally every Monday afternoon.
"The Jaguars' season is really in the tank," Stewart said. "They don't have a lot of promise. There's not a lot to watch. We're consumers and the Jaguars are a product, and there's a lot of room for improvement. Tebow we think would be value added if he were to be signed and given an opportunity at quarterback. ...
|A group of Jaguars fans held a rally Monday to urge the team to sign Tim Tebow, who starred at the University of Florida and is currently a free agent.|
"It's the perfect time in our view to do a Tebow experiment. Whether you like him or not, I think everyone would watch. It would be compelling."
Jacksonville is 0-2 after losing to Oakland 19-9 on Sunday. Starting quarterback Blaine Gabbert missed the game with a cut on his throwing hand. Chad Henne got the start and completed 25 of 38 passes for 241 yards and a touchdown.
The group of Jaguars fans holding the rally has created a website, jags-tebow.com. The mission, according to the website:
"Make it clear, we the fans, want the Jacksonville Jaguars to bring in Tim Tebow. You know you want to see this happen."
Not all Jaguars fans are behind the idea of Tebow joining the team. In May, a Jaguars booster club called the Bold City Brigade started a website, Evenifhesreleased.com, imploring the team not to sign the quarterback.
Jaguars general manager David Caldwell has said in the past that he isn't interested in adding Tebow to the team's quarterback depth chart.
Tebow spent the offseason and training camp with the New England Patriots. He was released when the Patriots pared their roster to 53 players.
No other team has shown interest in signing the 26-year-old quarterback since his release.