Jets owner supports Sanchez, but has high praise for Tebow

On the same day New York Jets coach Rex Ryan said Tim Tebow will be a "major contributor" to the team, owner Woody Johnson weighed in on the controversial acquisition of the former Denver Broncos quarterback.

"He’ll be a good addition for the team," Johnson said Sunday from Palm Beach, Fla., where the league's owners are gathered for the NFL Annual Meeting. "From a football standpoint, he adds flexibility, versatility, he's a great athlete -- he’s a big athlete. He can do a lot of things besides play quarterback."


Johnson said he wasn't worried about the potential for friction between Tebow and incumbent starter Mark Sanchez.

"No, I’m really not. They know each other," Johnson said, according to FoxSports.com. "Being an NFL quarterback is among the hardest jobs that you can have, from a pressure standpoint, from an athletic standpoint, etc. Pressure is something that Mark has no problem with. Neither does Tim Tebow, from what I gather. I don’t know him very well.

"But Mark is very, very good. We’ve all seen him in the fourth quarter. I wish he’d get better in the first quarter, perhaps. He realizes he has to make some improvements. The reason why we signed him to the extension that we did is because we have so much confidence in Mark and the body of work that he’s given to us and the fans."

"We have a lot of confidence in Mark," Johnson added. "Does Mark need to improve? Sure. He realized that. And exactly how he’s going to do that, he and the coaches will figure out.

"I’m very confident Mark will develop into a winning quarterback. ... Mark Sanchez is our starting quarterback."