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Jets Tebowmania Kicks Up a Notch

The Tim Tebow trade talk isn't going away.

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    If you can't tackle him, trade for him seems to be the Jets' philosophy.

    When we broke down reasons why the Jets should or shouldn't be getting into the Tim Tebow business, their chances of landing him in a trade with the Broncos were described as a longshot.

    Things happen quickly in the world of football, though, and Wednesday finds the Jets at the top of the list of teams pursuing the usurped Denver quarterback.

    There's even a report from an Orlando television station that says either the Jets or the Jaguars will wind up with Tebow before lunch on Wednesday.

    And away we go, right to the front pages of the tabloids. Tebow wound up on the cover of both the Post and News on Wednesday, although only the News handed over the back page to him with the predictable "Timsanity" headline splashed across the equally predictable shot of Tebow on one knee on the sideline.

    Interestingly, both papers feature columns arguing in strong terms against bringing Tebow to town without any counterpoint making the case for Tebow in green. Antonio Cromartie also argues against making a trade for Tebow, although that's not surprising because he's still feeling aftershocks from the quaking in his boots at the prospect of tackling Tebow last season.

    Based on the reasons that the Jets seem to be interested in bringing Tebow to New York, it's hard to really argue with their assessment.

    One of the key arguments in favor of Tebow is that he'd give the team a replacement for what they lost when Brad Smith left as a free agent before last season. Smith ran the Wildcat while also playing a role in the regular offense, though, and it's not clear that Tebow could be a contributor in as many different ways as Smith was during his time with the Jets.

    Smith was also no threat whatsoever to Mark Sanchez's spot in the starting lineup, something that would not be the case if Tebow was on the team. One bad quarter would be all it took for the calls for Tebow to start and they would not stop once they got rolling.

    Doing that makes very little sense for a team that just doubled down on Sanchez with a contract extension instead of making a serious play to find a player to challenge his hold on the starting job. That would have been okay, but grabbing Tebow at this point would be nothing more than an attempt to eat your cake and have it too by a front office that needs to pick a plan of attack and stick to it for more than a minute.

    That brings us to the second reason being bandied about for Tebow's arrival, which is that the team thinks he'd be a force for good in a locker room that nearly split at the seams last season. Feel free to scratch your head at that one.

    Tebow isn't a divisive force himself, perhaps, but his presence will only amp up the chaos from last season by providing another place of conflict for a team that claimed to be working to alleviate them. That kind of distraction would be okay if the potential upside was through the roof, but the incremental gain Tebow might provide as a Wildcat quarterback simply doesn't account for that.

    That may not be enough to dissuade the Jets from making their play, but it is certainly something they should be taking into account.

    Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City. You can follow him on Twitter and he is also a contributor to Pro Football Talk.

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