After 17 years as a college head coach, Urban Meyer is faced with a new “reality” with the Jaguars in his first foray into the NFL, one that directly impacts Tim Tebow’s chances of getting back on the football field.
And that is the limitations of a 53-man roster, every spot so precious that they must be reserved for the best possible players, meaning Tebow’s tight end experiment will likely be brief.
“That’s new to me. That’s the reality of the NFL that you have 90 players [before training camp cuts,]” Meyer told USA Today regarding the roster size when asked what Tebow needs to show to earn a spot.
“So to me, he’s one of 90. He’s a guy that’s — you know, what’s the difference between him and the other 40 guys trying to make the team? To me it’s all the same. This is their livelihood. This is a job. This is a way to make a living. And the reality is that a good percentage of your roster’s gonna get cut or transition out of here — which, to me, that’s completely new. In college, you’ve got your 85, 95 guys and you fit them in and you put the puzzle together. It’s much different here.”
The Jaguars signed Tebow, 33, last month after he had a tryout as a tight end and was with the team for offseason practices. The former Heisman Trophy winner — whom Meyer coached in college at Florida — hasn’t played in the NFL since 2012 with the Jets after three seasons as a quarterback. He had stints with the Patriots and Eagles, the latter coming in 2015, but never made another regular-season roster.
Tebow, a college football analyst for the SEC Network, then embarked on a minor-league baseball career with the Mets in 2016 before retiring from baseball earlier this year.