At least one Patriots writer fully expects Tim Tebow to make final roster

Tim Tebow PatriotsThe New England Patriots can release Tim Tebow before the regular season begins with no penalty. He is currently playing under a two-year, minimum salary deal that includes no guaranteed money. Earlier this week, offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said Tebow is competing for a backup quarterback position. Does that mean his chances of making the team are slim?

Quite the opposite, says Ben Volin of the Boston Globe. Although Bill Belichick has abandoned the concept of carrying three quarterbacks (Ryan Mallet is expected to stay) in recent years, Volin argued on Thursday that “all logic points to Tebow staying a Patriot” for at least the upcoming season.

For starters, Volin pointed out that there is little benefit to having Tebow on board strictly as a training camp player. As previous reports have indicated, he has struggled making throws in practice and has not looked all that sharp. The thing is, that is how Tebow has been since he came into the NFL. His shakiness makes it difficult to evaluate the players around him, so the Patriots would hardly benefit from rostering him strictly for training camp purposes.

In addition, Tebow is much more than just a quarterback. While New England may not be looking to convert him to a tight end as some reports previously stated, he can still line up at different positions and confuse opposing defenses. Those who watched linebacker Mike Vrabel catch touchdown passes know that Belichick loves the element of surprise, which is something he must considering with Tebow.

And of course, there is the locker room factor. In an offseason where the Patriots have lost a star tight end to a murder investigation and have a starting cornerback due back in court later this month, leadership and positive attitudes should be valued more than ever. Patriots owner Robert Kraft previously stated that you “can’t get enough people” like Tebow on your team.

It should be noted that there are plenty of people who disagree with Volin. Earlier this month, one ESPN writer gave Tebow a 25% chance of making the Patriots’ 53-man roster. At first, I thought Tebow was a longshot to make the team. But given all of the off-field issues New England has had this offseason, I wouldn’t be surprised if Tebow’s character holds more weight now that it did when he was signed.

Josh McDaniels: Tim Tebow is with the New England Patriots to play quarterback

Tim Tebow PatriotsIf you have been following Tim Tebow’s first training camp with the New England Patriots, you have likely heard the chatter about him catching passes and participating in running drills. Many people — myself included — have wondered if that means the Patriots intend to use Tebow at a position other than quarterback. Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels says that is not the case.

According to McDaniels, Tebow has taken part in ball-carrier drills because he is a scrambling quarterback.

“He’s just practicing his open-field running,” McDaniels told Ben Volin of the Boston Globe. “Matt Cassel and (Doug) Flutie and some of those other guys I’ve had a chance to coach, I think we did the same types of things with them. And again we know Tim has a skill set that some of these other guys don’t possess in terms of his ability to run with it, scramble with it when he has it in his hands.

“I know the defensive guys enjoy the challenge of trying to get him to the ground, but I think it’s good for everybody. It’s a normal procedure we go through in training camp.”

Of course, you never know with the Patriots. McDaniels could be under strict orders to tell the media that Tebow is only being used as a quarterback even if it’s untrue. Or maybe the initial reports about Tebow competing for a backup job were more accurate than those that speculated he would be used as a tight end.

“He’s put in a lot of time and effort to improve his individual skill set to play the position of quarterback in our offense, and I think every day is a learning tool for him,” McDaniels added.

Tebow has reportedly been very shaky throwing the ball in his first few practices, so he likely has a lot of work to do if he wants to prove to the coaching staff that he’s deserving of a roster spot. If the former Florida Gator is only vying for a quarterback position, it would likely be third string behind Tom Brady and Ryan Mallett. Bill Belichick rarely carries three quarterbacks.

Tim Tebow reportedly struggles again; Patriots fans chant for Tom Brady

Tim Tebow PatriotsAfter struggling in his first official practice with the New England Patriots, Tim Tebow reportedly showed more of the same on Saturday. Various Patriots beat writers who watched practice said that Tebow and Tom Brady both struggled in 11-on-11 passing drills and that several balls were batted down. However, Brady is not trying to prove himself to the fans.

According to Shalise Manza Young of the Boston Globe, Tebow took at least 10 seconds to do make a decision with the ball at one point during 11-on-11 drills. This did not please the fans in attendance at Gillette Stadium, and they reportedly began sarcastically chanting, “Brady! Brady!”

The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin confirmed the play where Tebow held the ball for 10 seconds and described his performance as “horrible.”

On Friday, Tebow caught a few passes in practice but those who watched him said he was terrible throwing the ball. While many people think it’s insane to criticize Tebow just two days into training camp, you have to remember that he is hardly a lock to make the Patriots 53-man roster. The time to impress the coaching staff is early on in camp, and he clearly has been unable to do that out of the gate.

Tim Tebow caught passes, threw two interceptions at Patriots first practice

Tim Tebow PatriotsTim Tebow has completed his first official training camp practice with the New England Patriots, and he was involved with plenty of action that could spark the Tebowmania talk once again.

For starters, ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Reiss pointed out that Tebow caught a few passes and took part in some run-after-the-catch drills. This is worth noting for two reasons. Early reports indicated that the Patriots may have signed Tebow with the intention of using him at tight end, but others have insisted he is vying for a backup quarterback position and nothing more. If he’s just there to play quarterback, then why didn’t Tom Brady or Ryan Mallet catch any passes?

“I think that we’ll use Tim wherever we feel like he’s best for the team and I know that’s what he’s committed to doing as well, whatever that is,” Bill Belichick said before practice.

Tebow also got a chance to show off his quarterbacking skills during Day 1, and Tom E. Curran of CSNNE.com said he was “horrendous.” He threw two interceptions, one of which was picked off at the line of scrimmage on a nice play by defensive end Chandler Jones and the other of which was thrown directly to a defensive back. He also one-hopped a throw to the sideline that hit the ground halfway there.

It was only Day 1 of training camp. We’re well aware of that, but there is certainly plenty to chew on with Tebow being used as a pass-catcher and playing horribly as a quarterback. If he truly is unlikely to make the Patriots roster, the early days in camp could be incredibly important.

LSU QB Zach Mettenberger: I don’t have horrible mechanics like Tim Tebow

Zach-Mettenberger-LSULSU has been a national championship contender for the past several seasons, and most of the their success has been the product of a ferocious defense. The Tigers like to pound the ball on the ground and create turnovers. Quarterback Zach Mettenberger was asked to do very little in his junior season last year, but that doesn’t mean he thinks he is incapable.

Mettenberger has been working with new LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron this offseason to improve his passing. At SEC Media Days on Thursday, he was asked if Cameron has been helping with his mechanics. That’s when Tim Tebow came into play.

Uncalled for? Tebow is known for having poor mechanics, but he is also a national champion who has won at the NFL level. It’s one thing for NFL legends to take shots at Tebow, but what has Mettenberger accomplished? He ranked 73rd in the country last season in completion percentage.

Stick to taunting Alabama fans, Zach. Ragging on Tebow isn’t going to get you anywhere.

H/T SI.com’s Campus Union

Tom Brady told Tim Tebow Aaron Hernandez is ‘a lot to handle’ in 2011

Tom-Brady-Tim-Tebow-handshakeWhen the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos faced each other toward the end of the 2011 season, reporters couldn’t wait to capture the postgame handshake between Tom Brady and Tim Tebow. Brady and Tebow are two of the most popular players in football, and Tebow had been defying the odds at that point by leading the Broncos on a playoff run.

The Patriots defeated Denver 41-23, and the two quarterbacks were very friendly with one another after the game. Brady told Tebow that he’s having a great year and that “good things happen to good people,” but they also touched on the subject of Aaron Hernandez.

Perhaps it was nothing, but Masshole Sports called our attention to the ironic dialogue NFL Network’s Sound FX segment captured at around the 1:30 mark of this video.

“I’m trying to watch over Aaron (Hernandez) and Brandon (Spikes) but…,” Brady said to Tebow before the two went their separate ways.

“They’re good guys, man,” Tebow replied.

“They’re a lot to handle,” Brady said.

Did Brady envision Hernandez would one day get himself mixed up with a murder investigation? Of course not. Could he simply have been joking with Tebow about two of his former Florida teammates? That’s probably all there was to it, but the current circumstances make the comment mean a bit more.

Patriots owner Robert Kraft recently said Hernandez was nothing but respectful and that he fooled everyone in the organization. Does the fact that he was “a lot to handle” mean Brady was less fooled than Kraft? Nah, it’s probably just a coincidence.

H/T Twitter/Wesley Lowery

Tim Tebow reportedly unlikely to make New England Patriots roster

Tim Tebow PatriotsRemember when the New England Patriots signed Tim Tebow and it was all everyone wanted to talk about? Thanks to Aaron Hernandez and an ongoing murder investigation, the buzz surrounding that move has essentially gone silent. Throw Alfonzo Dennard’s DUI arrest into the mix and — forgive me for saying it — Tebow is somewhat of a forgotten soul.

By the time the regular season comes around, the Patriots coaches may also forget to include him on the 53-man roster. Mike Rodak of ESPNBoston.com recently gave Tebow a 25% chance of making the Patriots final roster out of training camp. The Patriots have already unexpectedly lost one starter in Hernandez. They may soon lose another in Dennard, which makes each roster spot even more valuable.

Since New England signed Tebow, there have been various reports indicating the team brought him in to compete for a backup quarterback position and nothing else. Unless the Pats decide to cut Ryan Mallett, which seems unlikely given what they have invested in him, Tebow could be hoping the team plans to carry three quarterbacks. That has not been Bill Belichick’s style over the past few seasons.

Initially, there was speculation that the Patriots could use Tebow at tight end in addition to quarterback. One would think that theory has more legs than ever now that Hernandez is gone, but it doesn’t sound like that is the case.

The Patriots could obviously use all the high-character guys they can get in the wake of their recent legal issues, but they can’t keep Tebow on their roster strictly for locker room purposes. If the only contributions he will be able to make are as a No. 3 quarterback, it’s unlikely Tebow will make the cut.