Releasing Tim Tebow was the only option for Jaguars HC Urban Meyer

Head coach Urban Meyer of the Jacksonville Jaguars talks with Tim Tebow #85 (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)
Head coach Urban Meyer of the Jacksonville Jaguars talks with Tim Tebow #85 (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images) /

When Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer invited Tim Tebow to compete for a roster spot, he knew there was a chance things wouldn’t work out. After giving the 2010 first-round selection the opportunity to make the transition to tight end, Meyer decided to pull the plug on the experiment and the team released Tebow when they had to cut down the roster from 90 players to 85.

Make no mistake, signing the two-time SEC Player of the Year was the head coach’s idea. No other team was interested in signing Tebow, let alone afford him the opportunity to switch positions. He was off to a good start though. He showed up to the offseason program in great shape and had a couple of solid days of practice early in training camp. However, he struggled once the pads went on and was a non-factor in the Jags’ Week 1 preseason matchup against the Cleveland Browns.

In the end, Meyer realized that he couldn’t justify keeping Tebow and the team released him in the first round of cuts. The Jaguars head coach says moving on from the former Gator was tough but it was the right thing to do. He also acknowledged that it was an uphill battle for him, and pointed out that his inability to contribute on special teams played a big role in the Jaguars’ decision to move on from him, via the team’s official website.

"Two of the special teams’ phases are tackling and he (Tebow) had never tackled. We expect to be very good on special teams. The tight end position is one of those [positions], and tailback. If you can’t contribute on special teams, that’s a tough go."

The Jacksonville Jaguars couldn’t keep Tim Tebow any longer.

Signing Tim Tebow wasn’t necessarily a bad idea on paper. On one hand, Urban Meyer proved he was going to leave no stones unturned in his quest to build a winning team. Also, it showed a willingness to take calculated risks. The head coach knew it was a long shot but still gave it a try. It’s not as if he couldn’t bring in other players because the Jags signed the former Gator.

Meyer showed that he wasn’t going to do anything that was going to be detrimental to the team just for the sake of having Tebow around. As Hall-of-Fame quarterback Troy Aikman pointed out, the Jaguars head coach sent “a message to the team that this is business“.

Had the Jaguars not released Tebow, Meyer’s credibility would probably have taken a hit. He’s trying to install a culture of accountability and keeping someone who can’t contribute would have been questioned. He recognized that the quarterback-turned-tight end wasn’t going to help the team win, so he pulled the plug on the experiment.

Did the Jaguars make the mistake when they signed Tebow? You can make a case for and against it. However, they surely avoided making one by releasing him once he showed he wasn’t good enough to help the team win.

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