Tim Tebow (Kevin Saleeba/Patriots Insider)
Tim Tebow's 26.3 completion percentage needs to improve against Detroit tonight if he has any chance to make the Patriots roster in 2013. If he doesn't, "Tebow Time" will expire!
By Patrick Coyne
When the New England Patriots signed Tim Tebow prior to training camp this summer, expectations for the former failed Jets quarterback was low. During the last two preseason games, he may have exceeded that poor outlook as Tom Brady and Ryan Mallett’s backup with an even sadder performance than expected.
Is it safe to say, “Tebow Time” in New England is expiring?
Tebow has completed only five passes out of 19 attempts this pre-season for a meager total of 59 passing yards in the Patriots two exhibition games. Although Tebow has rushed the ball 10 times for sixty-one yards, he has been sacked three times and thrown an interception with no touchdowns.
In order for Tebow to survive the first round of cuts next week, Tebow will have to improve on his performance against Tampa where he had one completion on seven throws for -1 yard. That’s not a typo. His only completion was negative one yard. Think about it. He would have thrown for more yards if he did not complete any passes.
Although Tebow continues to lack the accuracy in his passes that are necessary to run a pro-style offense successfully, he has shown great athleticism running the read-option offense that made him successful in college with the Florida Gators and in the pros with the Denver Broncos a few years ago. However, running this style of offense may hinder any real development for Tebow as a passer long-term.
With that said; Tebow’s athleticism and potential versatility as a player may be the leading factor if he makes it onto the 75-man roster. His low price tag won’t hurt him either. As a player that would collect a base salary of $630,000 in 2013, the cap-conscious Patriots may factor that in their decision to keep Tebow.
Tebow will need to contribute something on the field as a passer in Detroit. He’ll have to show more to his game than being the third string quarterback. Julian Edelman, a former college quarterback, could always take snaps in the case of an emergency this season, making Tebow expendable.
There is no question Tebow has a positive influence on players in the locker room on the college and pro levels throughout his career. With the recent negative attention the Patriots received from Aaron Hernandez’ murder charges or Alfonzo Dennard’s DUI charge, can that be enough to keep a poorly rated passer on the roster?
With a preseason completion rate of 26.3 percent, the clock is ticking on “Tebow Time” in New England.
Patrick Coyne will be entering his sophomore year at Boston College as a staff writer for the school newspaper. He has been following the Patriots his entire life and has extensive knowledge of the team.