New York Jets quarterback Tim Tebow (15) leaves the field at the end of an NFL football game against the New England Patriots
Tim Tebow may say publicly that he has no regrets about how the 2012 season unfolded with the Jets, but if somebody offered him a time machine, we're guessing he'd gladly go back to March 2011 and have the Broncos trade him to Jacksonville.
Ten months ago, new Jaguars owner Shad Khan made it clear that he wanted Tebow, who grew up in Jacksonville before starring at Florida. (For whatever reason, Tebow thought the Jets were a better fit). So on March 21, 2012, moments after the Jets announced that Tebow was bringing his talents to New York, Khan issued the following statement:
"Earlier this week I asked Gene Smith and his staff to explore the potential of acquiring Tim Tebow. I think we have a duty to consider all avenues of improving the Jaguars on and off the field, especially given the unique circumstances involving the player. I appreciate the high level of due diligence Gene and his staff dedicated to this matter, even as late as this evening, and I am very satisfied with the outcome. Our commitment to developing Blaine Gabbert was, and still is, central to our goal of returning the Jaguars to elite status in the NFL. We're looking ahead with zero regrets."
Gene Smith has since been fired, as has coach Mike Mularkey, and it's not clear what Gabbert's future is in Jacksonville. But this much is certain: Khan wasn't kidding when he said the organization was looking ahead with "zero regrets." And even if Khan was having Tebowmania-inspired second thoughts, new general manager David Caldwell wasn't.
On the job a grand total of 24 hours, Caldwell said during a Thursday press conference that he isn't interested in bringing Tebow back to Florida.
"He is a member of the New York Jets, so I can't imagine a scenario where he would be a Jacksonville Jaguar," Caldwell said during a Thursday press conference (via Big Cat Country). Asked by a reporter to repeat what he said, Caldwell did just that: "I can't imagine a scenario where Tim Tebow would be a Jacksonville Jaguar. Even if he's released."
That's huge. Not because Tebow would've made the Jaguars better but because without Jacksonville, where does Tebow end up next season? As it stands, his best option might be reprising his role as the Jets' backup quarterback and punt protector.
Because if Jacksonville, a team with arguably the worst quarterback situation in the league (we'll concede that the Cardinals, Chiefs and Jets are in that conversation, as well), says "yeah, we're good" on the possibility of landing Tebow, he's pretty much out of options.