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New York Jets’ Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow: Former Buffalo Bills Quarterback Jim Kelly Rooting for Turmoil

June 30th, 2012 at 4:32 PM
By Donald Lappe

Former Buffalo Bills quarterback Jim Kelly, still a huge Bills supporter, is hoping that the New York Jets end up with a divisive quarterback controversy between Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow. Jim Kelly went on to say that he would hate to be in Mark Sanchez's position and he doesn't understand why the Jets would go out and get Tim Tebow.

'Rush' photo (c) 2010, Jeffrey Beall - license:

One of the most recognizable faces in Buffalo Bills history, quarterback Jim Kelly, is rooting for a New York Jets quarterback controversy between Mark Sanchez and backup quarterback Tim Tebow. Here's what Jim Kelly had to say:

"As a Buffalo Bills fan, I hope there’s so much turmoil during training camp, I hope Tebow plays great, he pushes Sanchez, and all of a sudden the locker room is coming apart. They open with the Buffalo Bills first game of the season in the Meadowlands, so this could be very exciting.”

Sounds like Jim Kelly is looking to get all the help he can for the 2012 Buffalo Bills. Apparently Mario Williams and the other additions made by Buffalo aren't enough in and of themselves to beat the big, bad Jets, who posted an 8-8 record last season. That 8-8 record did include two wins over the Bills.

The Week Nine 27-11 Jets win at Ralph Wilson Stadium really took the wind out of the collective sails of the Bills and their supporters. The Bills entered that game at 5-2, sitting atop the AFC East, and struggled mightily on offense for the better part of the game. That defeat brought the Bills back to Earth and sent them spiraling towards a 6-10 final record.

Beyond begging for help for his Buffalo Bills, Jim Kelly also explained that he wouldn't want to be Mark Sanchez right now:

“I really, to be honest with you, don’t know what they were thinking. Me, if I was a general manager or a president or the owner of a team, I would not have done that.”

This line of reasoning for being against the Jets trade for Tim Tebow is common, but flawed. Mike Tannenbaum's job is to assemble the best collection of talent possible heading into training camp. Rex Ryan and his staff are supposed to whittle down that bunch to the best 53 players that they will carry on their active roster, then put together an eight-man practice squad. Mike Tannenbaum and Rex Ryan are not being paid to coddle Mark Sanchez. In fact, they have taken heat the past few seasons because there was a perception that they were just that.

Now they are getting flak for not protecting Mark Sanchez from the drama of Tim Tebow. Being damned if you do and damned if you don't isn't fair and it's a game many people are playing with the Mark Sanchez-Tim Tebow dynamic. Not the Mark Sanchez-Tim Tebow competition, because there is none.

The Jets upgraded their backup quarterback position from Mark Brunell last season, and initially slated as Drew Stanton for this season, to Tim Tebow. Substituting Tim Tebow for either of those guys is an upgrade and gives the Jets another player who can contribute with Mark Sanchez still in place as the starting quarterback. It makes the Jets a better team. And yet they are still getting crushed in the media for it.

Maybe, just maybe, Jim Kelly should stop worrying about Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow and start worrying about Ryan Fitzpatrick. You know, that guy that the Bills signed for nearly $60 million over six years. Ryan Fitzpatrick, who threw 17 picks over the last 10 games after signing that big money deal. That guy who went 2-8 after signing that contract. Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Buffalo Bills quarterback who is 1-5 against the New York Jets in his career.

It's funny how the name "Tim Tebow" can distract so many from the deficiencies of others, like the quarterback of the team everyone seems to be picking to finish ahead of the Jets this season. 


Tags: AFC East, Buffalo Bills, Football, Jim Kelly, Mark Sanchez, Mike Tannenbaum, New York, New York Jets, NFL, Rex Ryan, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tim Tebow

2 Responses to “New York Jets’ Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow: Former Buffalo Bills Quarterback Jim Kelly Rooting for Turmoil”

  1.  Paul Lane Sabres 101 says:

    Jim Kelly is a true blue Bills fan. He is rumored to be part of a team that will buy the franchise once Ralph Wilson dies. He’s right, though. And a Jets fan would have to know bringing Tebow on board would draw this sort of attention from everywhere. You heard what the Broncos were saying after Tim left Colorado – he inevitably will divide things assuming he gets a significant number of touches. Whether that hurts the on-field performance is a diffeent story, but he will do more harm than good.

    •  Donald Lappe says:

      It’s childish. I would never root for a Mario Williams injury or for Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels to have a huge blowup that divides the Pats locker room. I want to play every team at their very best and see who comes out on top.

      As far as Tebow bringing division to the locker room, I completely disagree. There hasn’t been a negative peep about him or Sanchez from anyone affiliated with the New York Jets. Sanchez isn’t Kyle Orton and Brady Quinn.

      There’s only a QB controversy if Sanchez’s play allows there to be one. If he comes out and completely bombs in the first five games, then maybe he deserves to get yanked. There’s this chicken little attitude that as soon as he throws an incompletion everyone will scream for Tebow. Even if that does happen, fans don’t run the team or make personnel decisions. They have zero impact on what happens between the white lines.

      He’ll do more harm than good? I call shenanigans. Tebow will be a contributor this season in the wildcat and his unique skill set as a small portion of the Jets offense will be difficult for defenses to prepare for.

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