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Jets news: McElroy excited, Sanchez and Tebow look to future

The SportsXchange

The New York Jets' quarterback position continued to draw attention Wednesday.

Coach Rex Ryan did not directly address questions about Tim Tebow's future with the team and Mark Sanchez, benched as the starter this week in favor of Greg McElroy, received death threats on Twitter that later were deleted by the sender.

According to reports, Tebow will ask for a trade or his release after the season.

"We'll see what happens," coach Rex Ryan said. "My focus has to be with those two games and that's it."

McElroy was named the Jets' starter for the final two regular-season game over Tebow and Sanchez. He also will receive most of the practice snaps with the first-team offense.

"Obviously, I'm excited," McElroy said. "This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. This is a great moment and a great milestone in my career. Obviously this is something I've looked forward to and I've dreamed about my entire life. I'm thrilled to have this opportunity. This is a tremendous team. I'm just glad (and) thankful to (Coach) Rex (Ryan) and Coach Sparano for giving me a shot."

McElroy downplayed speculation that Sunday could be an audition to become the Jets' new regular starting quarterback next season.

"I don't look at it like anything," he said. "Obviously, it's one game at a time. Like I said a couple weeks ago, your role changes every day, and every minute. You never know what the situation is going to be. Obviously, going into Sunday, I'm going to be the starter. I'm very thankful and fortunate for this opportunity, but I'm not concerned about next week against Buffalo. I'm not concerned about next year. I'm not concerned about those things."

McElroy seemed to go out of his way to applaud Sanchez.

"Everything that I've learned at this position in this league has been from Mark. He's the guy that I've seen every day," McElroy said. "Every day that I've been an NFL player, I've been looking up to him. I've been observing him and trying to follow after his lead. I've been watching him. I understand how to play this game because of him and I'm very grateful for that opportunity. I'm looking forward to continue working (with him) and I know he'll help me out every step of the way."

When Tebow came to the Jets after last season, the plan for Tebow was to use him in a wildcat formation this year, but he has seen little playing time.

"(The Wildcat) hasn't been totally ineffective," Ryan said. "It hasn't panned out to my expectations and maybe to Tim's either."

Tebow answered a flurry of questions during a Wednesday media session. The first thing he addressed was not being chosen as starter.

:Obviously, (I'm) a little disappointed. (You) just try to handle it as best you can," Tebow said.

Tebow tried to be conciliatory but it was clear he was not happy at the news, prompting various reports he'll be leaving the Jets after this season, perhaps asking for a trade or outright release.

"Mr. T (owner Mike Tannenbaum) and Rex (Coach Ryan), they're all trying to do the best they can just like everyone in this building and they thought that was the best decision for this organization and I respect that," Tebow said. "You might not agree, but I still respect it. (As for returning to the Jets) I'll wait until after this season to talk about anything like that."

Tebow said he has no regrets having come to the Jets, nor does he feel deceived about what he was originally told his role would be -- and what it has become.

On if he regrets coming to the Jets...

"No, sir, I don't have regrets," Tebow said. "I believe everything happens for a reason and it's a learning opportunity for me. There's a lot that I've learned, good and bad, and I still appreciate the opportunity to come be a Jet. I don't feel deceived. I just appreciate the opportunity that I've had here and I'm going to make the most of these last two weeks."

Sanchez, meanwhile, showed restraint about his demotion from his usual starting role for Sunday's game.

"I respect Coach's decision," Sanchez said of Ryan. "Obviously, I want to be out there playing, so I don't necessarily agree with it, but when something like that happens, I just do my best to support Greg (McElroy) and support the team and get him ready to play. Then, obviously, prepare like the starter in case I need to go in there."

Sanchez added that he did not feel undermined by the Jets and that, like Tebow, he felt he needed to play better.

"I feel like I need to play better and put our team in a better situation and take care of the football betterl," Sanchez said.

Sanchez said he expects to chart plays along the sidelines while McElroy leads the team.

"Obviously, I'm supporting Greg this week," Sanchez said. "If anything happens, I'll get in there and then we'll take next week in stride when we get there."

The death threat against Sanchez came from a fan upset about Sanchez's five turnovers in a loss Monday night to Tennessee.



Contacted by USA Today, the fan backed down, saying he deleted the tweets.

"I do not want to harm Sanchez or do intend to. I'm just a Die hard Jets fan that was mad & got carried away."

When asked about the threat, Sanchez said simply, "I'm not going to comment on that."
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