With a decorated high school and collegiate career in the Sunshine State, New York Jets Wildcat quarterback Tim Tebow will make a much anticipated return to his old stomping grounds on Sunday. While Sun Life Stadium in Miami is nearly 350 miles south of Tebow's Alma mater in Gainesville, the former Heisman Trophy winner still has some fond football memories to look back on.
"Well, it's Florida, so it's fun," remarked Tebow. "Playing at the stadium is always fun though. I've had some good games in the stadium. I won a state championship and a national championship there."
On the heels of a 27-10 drubbing by the Pittsburgh Steelers, Tebow took just three snaps out of the Wildcat package during Week Two, all coming in the third quarter with the Jets desperately searching for an offensive spark. On his lone carry of the day, Tebow barreled through the Steelers defensive front for 22 yards and appeared to jumpstart a lackluster offense. While Tebow's talents were used sparingly in the Steel City, he's looking to make the most of his opportunities moving forward.
"I think you just have to know your role and where you're at and be smart about situations," noted Tebow. "If you're asked, you have to believe in yourself. (You have to) be ready for whenever you're called if that's asked upon, then you can say something like that. As far as, where I'm at now, I just try to be ready when I'm asked to go."
Tim Tebow | Florida Gators
The Jets looked like offensive juggernauts on opening day tallying 48 points and embarrassing a playoff-hopeful Buffalo Bills squad. What a difference a week makes, as Gang Green failed to score in the second half of last Sunday's lopsided loss to Pittsburgh. With the coaching staff looking to create a winning formula, the former University of Florida standout understands that New York's dual quarterback system is still a work in progress.
"I just think we're trying to figure out how to win games the best way we can," mentioned Tebow of the offense's inconsistencies. "We were very explosive the first week and we came out very explosive last week. Unfortunately, we were unable to capitalize on some of our moving the ball last week. We fell behind a few scores, but we'll see what happens this week."
Offensive coordinator Tony Sparano has yet to utilize Tebow in the passing game, something that fans and the media alike are anxiously awaiting to see.
"I don't know," admitted Tebow of when he'll attempt a pass during the regular season. "I think a lot of the teams that we play, or probably played against, or have seen recently, know that we have a threat down the field. I think eventually that'll be something to keep them on their heels, but I think that's already something that they plan on."
While Tebow's playing time is a hot button issue across the country, No. 15 seems unfazed by all the public scrutiny.
"I don't really pay attention to all of you so it doesn't matter to me," Tebow joked with reporters on Wednesday. "I just try to be ready for whatever my role is and try to do it the best I can."
Rick Laughland covers the New York Jets for Greenandwhitereport.com
You can follow him on Twitter @rlaughland