NFL notes: Tugging on Tebow's jersey

Tim Tebow New York Jets jerseys are put up for display in New York, N.Y., March 23, 2012. (SHANNON...

Tim Tebow New York Jets jerseys are put up for display in New York, N.Y., March 23, 2012. (SHANNON STAPLETON/Reuters)

BILL LANKHOF, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:01 PM ET

TORONTO - Nike and Reebok are to apparel what Cain and Abel are to the beginning of mankind.

Mortal enemies.

And, it didn’t take them long to get into a cat-fight over Tim Tebow. Well, not exactly Tebow himself. The man himself isn’t much more than a human mannequin. They’re fighting over Tebow sweaters.

Reebok has been the official supplier of NFL apparel for the past decade but Nike takes over the contract next week.

So, in one last cash grab, Reebok has flooded the market with Tebow jerseys bearing their logo while Nike isn’t rolling out its gear until next week.

So Nike is filing suit.

“We have filed a complaint relating to unauthorized use of Tim Tebow’s name on New York Jets related apparel,” Nike said in a statement. “Nike is authorized and licensed to use Tim Tebow’s name on products.”

The suit said Reebok’s actions will damage Nike’s ability to capitalize on a “unique and short-lived opportunity.”

The lawsuit added that it was unlikely that a consumer who buys an unauthorized Tebow jersey or T-shirt from Reebok this week will purchase an authorized Tebow item from Nike next week.

NINERS ADD ANOTHER GIANT

San Francisco once stole a baseball team from New York.

Now it looks like they’re trying to take their football team, too. Even if they have to do it one player at a time.

The Niners Wednesday signed former Giants’ running back Brandon Jacobs. San Francisco already has signed free agent New York receiver Mario Manningham.

Jacobs best days appear to be behind him and San Francisco already has a solid, all-round back in Frank Gore and an exciting, young thoroughbred in Kendall Hunter. But Jacobs gives them insurance and while salary details of the one-year deal weren’t announced it reportedly is less than $2 million.

That’s back-up money.

In New York, Jacobs complained long and hard about his lack of playing time. But when he did get on the field he often wasn’t effective in third or fourth-and-short situations. He is most effective running straight ahead. Last season he kept running outside the numbers. Or, to be more precise, kept getting tackled outside the numbers.

Jacobs will also turn 30 in July — the “Best Before” date of most running backs. He had 571 yards on 152 carries last year.

It added up to the Giants giving him his release, rather than pay him a $500,000 roster bonus on top of a $4.4 million salary he would’ve been due next season.

So, for Jacobs this has to be a loss of face. But it also may be the salvation of his career. Or, at least, a prolongation. He could still be effective. In a limited role. It was a role that he could never accept in New York, where he still envisioned himself as the lead back that he was in the middle of the last decade.

In San Francisco, he’s third string. On the depth chart. On the pay scale. No illusions.

JETS STILL NOT A HAPPY GANG

There’s nothing Tim Tebow can do to damage the New York Jets’ locker room.

After all, when you’re already looking at a train wreck, there’s no point anymore in wondering if the new engineer the company is about to hire knows how to drive it.

Damage is already done.

And the Jets are a train wreck. Cornerback Darrelle Revis confirmed what most people suspected Wednesday. In an appearance on ESPN, Revis was asked to play a word-association game. Given the term: “locker room”, Revis responded: “Disarray right now.”

Tebow might not be able to fix that, but it’s difficult to see how he could make it worse.

Revis also confirmed that not all of Mark Sanchez’s teammates believe the quarterback has been all he could be. “I think (Tim Tebow) will have a big impact on (Sanchez) in terms of just trying to maybe push him a little bit more.”

In other words, make him sweat a little.


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