As long as Tim Tebow remains property of the New York Jets, he’ll get a chance to compete for the starting job, head coach Rex Ryan told reporters Tuesday at the owner’s meetings.
The question is: How long will he remain with the team?
Ryan said embattled incumbent Mark Sanchez will begin the offseason program as the starter, but his spot isn’t guaranteed.
“The first snap, he’ll be the guy running out there first, but there’s going to be competition at that spot, there’s no question about it,” Ryan said. “We need to get better at the quarterback position.”
Sanchez threw for 2,883 yards and 13 touchdowns last season, ranking him 26th in passing and tied for 25th (with Kansas City Chiefs’ quarterback Alex Smith) in touchdowns. He also tied Indianapolis Colts’ rookie Andrew Luck for third with 18 interceptions.
Tebow appeared in 12 games, mostly in the wildcat formation, and completed six of eight passes for 39 yards. When Sanchez was benched for a game last season, the Jets started backup Greg McElroy.
Citing a league source, ESPNNewYork.com reported that the Jets hope to deal, but will release otherwise.
“He’s on the roster, and he’ll get a chance to compete,” Ryan said of Tebow. “We’ll see how the offseason plays out, but right now Tim is on our roster.”