The Philadelphia Eagles are no strangers to the spotlight, particularly in an offseason that has seen the team rid itself of top-flight talent like LeSean McCoy, Jeremy Maclin and Nick Foles for the likes of the perenially injured Sam Bradford. Now the squad is about to sign Tim Tebow, a move that will ensure that the sports media (read: ESPN) camps out in Philadelphia until it is forced to tear itself away for the upcoming NFL draft.
Chip Kelly made news last month when he brought in the 27-year old Tebow for a workout, but left Philadelphia with no deal. According to Schefter,
Before signing Tebow, the Eagles first wanted to try to trade backup quarterback Matt Barkley. But when the team could not get enough in return, it decided to bring in Tebow anyway so that he could be present for the team’s entire off-season program.
Tebow will be reunited with former Jets teammate Mark Sanchez. He joins a crowded field of quarterbacks for the Eagles, which includes Sanchez, Bradford, Barkley and G.J. Kinne.
Tebow has been out of the league since August of 2013, when he was released by the Patriots. While in New England, he completed 11 of 30 passes for 145 yards and two touchdowns and two interceptions in three preseason games. While some argue that all he does is win, Tebow has notoriously struggled with throwing in the NFL, with a career a 47.9 completion percentage. He has thrown 17 touchdowns to nine interceptions during his time in the league. The quarterback has worked with QB coach Tom House in an attempt to spur an NFL comeback, work that has impressed the Eagles.
The divisive quarterback will clearly have to compete for a spot on the team, but the move is another head scratcher in an Eagles offseason filled with them. Kelly must have been impressed by what he saw from Tebow in March, but signing the quarterback brings a circus-like level of attention to a team that needs to keep its focus among a sea of changes. Media interest should not dictate football decisions, but this will be interesting, to put it mildly. Let’s see what Tebow’s got–and what Kelly’s got up his sleeve.