Our coronavirus coverage is free for the first 24 hours. Find the latest information at Please consider subscribing or donating.

  1. Florida

Former Gator Tim Tebow released by New York Jets

Former Florida Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow's tumultous 13-month stint with the New York Jets has ended.

Tebow was released by the team this morning, making him a free agent. He must pass through waivers, and NFL teams have until 4 p.m. Tuesday to claim him.

"We have a great deal of respect for Tim Tebow," Jets head coach Rex Ryan said. "Unfortunately, things did not work out the way we all had hoped. Tim is an extremely hard worker, evident by the shape he came back in this offseason (losing weight). We wish him the best moving forward."

The decision was not surprising. On Friday the Jets drafted former West Virginia QB Geno Smith in the second round, meaning New York would have five quarterbacks competing for the starting job. Mark Sanchez, David Garrard, Greg McElroy and Smith remain on the roster.

Tebow was acquired by the Jets from the Broncos in March 2012 for a fourth-round draft pick. At the time, Tebow was coming off a season in which he took over as the starter for the Broncos in midseason and helped lead them into th playoffs.

The Jets insisted they had plans to use Tebow in multiple roles behind starter Sanchez, including the Wildcat package. But as he did in Denver, Tebow came under heavy criticism from many about his lack of an NFL throwing arm. And while he continued to draw a stunning amount of national media attention for a backup QB, he never did much of the field for the Jets.

Tebow played 70 snaps on offense, and saw time on the punt team until he suffered a rib injury this past November. He was 6-of-8 for 39 yards and rushed 32 times for 102 yards.