Reporting Jason Iannone
Last season, the New York Jets fell to Earth in the most hilarious manner imaginable, with a 6-10 record that looks far better than it actually was. When your quarterback fumbles the ball by running into his teammate’s ass, and that headlines ESPN’s Not Top 10 EVERY WEEK SINCE IT HAPPENED, you’re probably doing something (everything) wrong.
The whole time, Tim Tebow sat rotting on the Jets bench, silently watching his team fail and fail again. Coach Rex Ryan never gave him the starting job, even though he has proven that his magical powers can will an otherwise-cruddy team into the postseason. Even when Mark Sanchez, the starting QB, got so bad that Ryan was forced to replace him, he went over Tebow’s head and started the third-string guy, who did a good job and probably has a name, but we don’t care enough to research it. Not even his own mother would bother to find out.
The 2013 season is fast approaching, and the Jets have changed virtually nothing. Ryan’s still the coach. Sanchez is still the starter. And Tebow is still hanging around awkwardly, waiting for someone to give him something to do. His stock has fallen so much that no team wants him, even the crappy ones. Why he hasn’t been released yet is beyond us.
Well, if they’re going to keep the kid around, then why not do something wacky with him? There are plenty of inventive uses for a Tebow aside from collecting dust, and he seems like a swell guy who would do whatever you tell him to do. After all, idle hands are the devil’s playthings, and Tebow sure as Hell doesn’t want to play with Satan. So instead, you could make him the …
Somebody has to be in that suit, but nobody really wants to be. Being a mascot means enduring hot, sweaty, claustrophobic, and degrading conditions, all while nobody knows your name or sees your face. Sounds perfect for somebody who, at this point, probably just wants to get away.
Tim Tebow would be the perfect mascot. Despite that annoying knack he has for not being very good at quarterbacking, he’s still a legitimate athlete, with good stamina and endurance. Plus, he’s from Florida, where a new Ice Age is declared whenever temperatures drop below 65. So running around for hours on end in a 100-degree wool suit would be easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy for the guy.
Of course, the Jets don’t actually have a mascot. We’re assuming they’ve just been too stupid to think of one since, again, they’re the Jets. If they do decide to create one, we’re praying that they don’t make it too Tebow-esque. The Jets mascot could be anything from an anthropomorphic plane, to a giant female foot (gotta keep Rex happy somehow.)
Actually, considering what team this is, a sad clown might be the most fitting mascot of all. It would just be Tebow shuffling around, head down, and openly weeping every time the Jets mess up an unbelievably simple play. He can occasionally squirt himself with a seltzer bottle in an attempt to cheer himself up, but to no avail. He is the Depressed Jet Clown, waiting patiently for that eternal offseason to whisk him away, and grant him peace at long last.
You want Tebow to instantly win the fans’ love and affection? Make him that guy who walks around the stadium and sells hot dogs and coke out of a giant box. You’d be shocked how much more appealing overpriced foodstuffs are when you don’t have to get up and track them down yourself.
Doing this job, by the way, is not easy. You don’t just hang around one section yelling STUFF HEEYA GETCHA STUFF HEEYA. No, you walk everywhere while peddling those goods. A typical food-and-drink-man can log several miles of non-stop movement over a four-hour game; virtually all of it is spent climbing up and down stairs, creating an extra degree of difficulty.
A guy like Tebow, who stayed in game shape despite knowing he wasn’t logging more than 10 minutes of action all year, could handle the physical demands of this job extremely well. As long as he doesn’t attempt to toss the food around like a “cool” vendor. If he did that, we’d have a cheeseburger land in somebody’s half-eaten nachos within minutes.
Actually, that could be a decent publicity tool: order a meal from Tim Tebow. If he tosses it, and it either misses or hits you in the face, you get it for free. This would have to a once-a-year special, however. If they did it every time, MetLife Stadium would be bankrupt by Thanksgiving.
Before you get all giggly, just know that we’re not here to make jokes about Tim Tebow in a skirt. We’re mature, sophisticated, thoughtful people, who are simply trying to help a talented (we swear) young man find his lot in life. We are not here to stick images in your head of Tebow in a short dress and tight shirt, bouncing up and down during a synchronized sexy dance routine. And we’re definitely not here to make you think about Tebow at the top of the cheerleader pyramid, arms raised and legs spread, with the girls on the bottom sneaking a peek at his goods and cursing the fact that it’s strictly off-limits to everyone but his future bride.
Are you not thinking about that? Good, we can move on.
Much like the food-and-drink job, cheerleading requires a ridiculous amount of athletics. If anyone can handle the rigors of a complicated, exhausting dance routine, it’s Tebow. And what else is required in a cheerleader? That’s right, being a smile junkie: someone so annoyingly peppy that the cast of Glee asks him to take it down a friggin’ notch.
This is Tebow to a T. He’s a happy, pious, contented dude, who knows he’s going somewhere that 99.9999999999% of us have no hope of reaching, and he’s all about motivating people to be happier, healthier, and better. He’d be the perfect cheerleader, even if he doesn’t know how to dance. He can’t throw either, and look how far that’s gotten him.
After last season’s 16-week crash course on how not to run a football team, the New York Jets’ most famous superfan, Fireman Ed, announced his retirement from superfanning. What kind of pension does a $0-a-year salary command these days?
An even bigger question is, who to replace him with? After all, how can a team hope to operate without a borderline psychopathic dude in the front row, wearing a silly costume and living vicariously through men far more successful than he? By focusing on good, solid football? Please; these are the Jets. They need all the costumed distractions they can find.
And that’s where Tebow comes in. Dress him up in stereotypical preacher gear: slicked-back hair, way too much make-up, and a suit-and-tie that looks like it’s made out of plastic. Then, stick him in the front row, and let him go crazy. He can do all the crazy stuff that his detractors assume he does anyway (even though he doesn’t), and other people will be fine with it because that kind of behavior is expected of a superfan.
Hopefully, Tebow will be down for such crazy go-nuts clownery. He seems to be a fairly no-nonsense guy, who simply wants to come to work, sit on the bench, watch his teammates embarrass themselves, maybe come in for one meaningless rushing play, lose, and then go home. Playing the role of Preacher Tim might not come naturally for this kid; in which case, we can always make him …
As the old phrase goes, “Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach.” This would not be more evident than if you made Tim Tebow the Head Coach of the Jets. He clearly knows football; he’s just not all that good at it. There’s no shame in that; Bill Belichick wasn’t a very good player, but he’s a filthy-rich Hall Of Fame coach with three Super Bowl rings (plus two more as an Assistant Coach.) Tebow’s already proven himself a great motivator; if he could combine that with even a fifth of Belichick’s hardassed-ness-ocity (making up new words is hard) he’d be an unstoppable coach.
Problem is that Rex Ryan, despite being a buffoon by every conceivable definition of the word, is not going anywhere, presumably because the Jets enjoy unintentional comedy just as much as we do. So to that, we say that making Tim Tebow and Rex Ryan CO-coaches would create enough wonderful blooper moments to fill at least ten DVDs.
It would be like two bickering roommates who can’t agree on what pizza to order:
Tebow: I want mushrooms!
Ryan: I want to eat everything and not even offer you a nibble!
Only even funnier, because football’s incredibly complicated, Ryan barely understands it, Tebow’s never coached, and the players would become increasingly confused by the conflicting signals and inevitable arguing, until all 11 of them commit buttfumbles at the same time, and YouTube’s servers explode from the viral overload.
So if your goal in life is to spend your entire day guffawing at the misfortunes of others (this includes giggling in your sleep,) then petition the Jets to hire Co-Coach Tim Tebow. Because the team’s just going to fail next season AGAIN, so they might as well have some fun while doing so.