Things are not looking too hot for the Tim Tebow comeback tour.
The Jacksonville Jaguars released their initial depth chart on Thursday, and Tebow is currently towards the bottom of the tight end battle. Although it’s unofficial, the depth chart lists Chris Manhertz as the starter, followed by James O’Shaughnessy as the backup, and Luke Farrell the third-string option. Then it is a three-man group at the bottom of the totem pole that contains Tebow, Ben Ellefson, and Tyler Davis.
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The former quarterback returned to the gridiron after five years of attempting to become a professional baseball player with the New York Mets franchise. He is hoping to make the team as a tight end.
As a quarterback, Tebow threw for 2,422 yards, 17 touchdowns, and nine interceptions in 16 career starts. His iconic quarterback moment was beating the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2011 AFC wild-card game by throwing an 80-yard touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas. Tebow also won the 2007 Heisman Trophy when he was coached by Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer at the University of Florida.
The 33-year-old has had his fair share of up-and-downs at his new position during training camp. To start the preseason, Tebow had the second-most catches of any tight end in the first four days of training camp with seven, according to ESPN. Since then, he has been relatively quiet and has had trouble figuring out the nuances of his new position.
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“In his drill work, he’s great, but when you get in a competitive moment, just [because of his] lack of experience he wants to body the ball,” Meyer said of Tebow after practice. “When you get to a point where two people are going after it, you have to go get the ball. He is fighting through that a little bit, but he has the skill set to catch the ball.”
Tebow will look to showcase his newfound tight-end abilities when the Jags take on the Browns on Saturday in their preseason opener. He will need to rise to at least the clear-cut fourth-string tight end if he wants to stay on the 53-man roster. Or, he could perhaps spend the season on the practice squad if he chooses.