NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - Mark Sanchez has finally gotten the boot as the New York Jets' starting quarterback, as Rex Ryan announced on Tuesday that Greg McElroy will make his first career start against the Chargers on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
So where does that leave Tim Tebow?
Apparently not in a very good place.
The former first-round pick, who was acquired this offseason to back up Sanchez, will request to be traded or released after the season if McElroy starts the final game of the year, the New York Daily News reported.
Despite his extremely limited role in the Jets' offense, the Florida product reiterated throughout the season that he was happy in New York and would be willing to do whatever was asked of him by the coaching staff.
The first crack in the armor came Wednesday.
"(I) try to make the most of every opportunity I have," an obviously disappointed Tebow said. "Would have loved to have more."
The good-guy sentiment may be on its last legs after the 25-year-old was bypassed for the third-stringer, despite the fact that Tebow led the Broncos to a miraculous playoff run last season.
It seems Ryan believes more in McElroy, who has a mere seven career NFL passes.
Asked about whether he would request a trade or release, Tebow said: "I look forward to talking about it after the Buffalo game."
In Week 13 against the Cardinals, Sanchez was taken out in favor of McElroy late in the third quarter, and the Alabama alum responded by willing Gang Green to victory. Though it wasn't especially pretty -- McElroy went 5-for-7 for 29 yards -- his lone touchdown pass was enough to lead the Jets to a win.
The following week Sanchez was back starting under center, where he's remained up until now.
"I have to look at what I think is the best for the team and not necessarily the individual," Ryan said on Tuesday. "I'll say this about Tim, and I've always said it: I know he wants to help this team be successful in the worst way, and there's no doubt about that."
Despite Ryan's kind words, Tebow's patience might be finally wearing thin.
"Every opportunity you get you want to make the most of. I would have loved to have more of an opportunity to just play quarterback," Tebow said.
Used primarily as a personal punt protector on special teams, Tebow has thrown just eight passes this season, completing six of them for 39 yards. He's also rushed the ball 32 times for 102 yards.
He hasn't scored a touchdown as a member of the Jets.
"People can speculate anything they want," Ryan said. "Obviously, as a football team, we're 6-8. Nobody's happy about that, and ultimately I'm the one accountable."
Will the Tebow era in New York go down as one of the worst experiments in sports history? Sound off with your thoughts and comments below...
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