While I readily admit I am not overwhelmed with Tim Tebow’s prospects as an NFL starting quarterback, he is not without assets that could help my favorite NFL team – the New York Jets. In fact the sting of Tebow’s 95 yard late fourth quarter march to victory over the Jets as a member of the Denver Broncos still smarts. Now Tebowmania will be coming to New York and while his addition hardly makes the Jets an immediate Super Bowl contender, the attention and buzz created by the signing shows the Jets understand that football is entertainment and if nothing else Tebow and the Jets offers great prospects for ongoing entertainment. Entertainment + fan engagement = marketing success.
So what if the Jet signing of Tebow was as much for marketing reasons as it was for football. The Jets just extended starting quarterback Mark Sanchez’s contract to five years at a total of $58.25 million. The concern that Mr. Sanchez’s feelings might be bruised with the addition of Tebow is totally overblown. Nobody should feel sorry for Mark Sanchez – he would tell you that himself.
No doubt the first time Sanchez throws a late game interception or fumbles the boo-birds will be out in force calling for Mr. Tebow to ‘take over’. The Jets management team was well aware of that but the allure of bringing in such an interesting player like Tim Tebow was too strong. By NFL standards Mr. Tebow’s contract at roughly $1 million per year makes him a pretty inexpensive backup/wildcat quarterback.
Was the move to bring in Tebow a thinly veiled attempt by the Jets to take back some of newspaper back pages lost to the New York Giants in their unlikely Super Bowl run to the championship this past season? Jet management would tell you no, this was a football move that makes the team better. But don’t think for a moment that the ‘added-value’ of having a New York Jets version of ‘Linsanity’ in ‘Tebowmania’ didn’t play a role in the decision. And is there really wrong with that?
I want to believe that having Tim Tebow take ten snaps a game at quarterback will contribute to the Jets finally returning to the Super Bowl. After all it’s been more than 43 years. Jet owner Woody Johnson, GM Mike Tannenbaum and coach Rex Ryan have made the Jets a preferred destination for NFL players – let’s not forget that as recently as 5 years ago few players had desire to ‘be a Jet’.
If nothing else Tim Tebow’s tenure with the New York Jets will not be boring. However long it lasts.
Do you think marketing played a role in the Jets signing Tim Tebow?
It’s the Jets being the Jets. Instead of being smart and focusing on winning (like the Giants) they are focusing on nonsense like this.
Just like last year, they will get exactly what they earn, most likely scorn, ridicule, and laughter based on no respect.
Thanks for the comment but I guess you are not only not a Jet fan but a Giant loving Jet detractor. I happen to think it was a chance worth taking.
I am not a Jets hater, I just think this has no value as a marketing move, not in the NFL. In Baseball, basketball, etc. this can be a good idea. It puts more people in the seats and maybe brings more TV revenue.
The NFL is the best run sports league we have. TV revenues are pooled so no help there. The Jets sell out every game, so no help there. The only thing relevant to this I hear out of the Jets is they want more “buzz” in NY (specifically more than the Giants). Rex running his mouth gets the wrong kind, and their dysfunctional locker room is also not the marketing they are looking for.
To me, this move makes no sense as a marketing move, other than MAYBE bringing in some Jersey revenue, but not if Tebow does not have a significant part (read be a starter) in the offense.
Just like all the empty boasting, this looks to me to be almost all about ego. If you want mind share in NY, winning is the only thing that will do that.
When is the last time the Giants, Pats, or Green Bay made a “marketing” move? I think the next time will also be the first. I think the Jets need to keep their focus on the things that matter.
The Jets are a noisy bunch and I think that’s helped them land players who would previously never wanted to play for them. I’d like to see a more quietly confident team as even Jet fans are beginning to tire of the noise. But by marketing the public persona of a team to be reckoned with the Jets continue to be relevant – something the Giants, Pats and Green Bay have not needed to be worried about for quite some time.