Jaguars owner Shahid Khan isn't a member of the sobbing chorus. In fact, he's under the impression he dodged a bullet.
"That would have been the worst thing for Jacksonville and the worst thing for him," Khan told The Florida Times-Union on Monday at the NFL Annual Meeting. "He didn't want to come, obviously. ... Any one of the 53 players we have, have to be committed to Jacksonville, making us be the best team we are. The question was: Did he want to come? And if the decision had been taken out (of his hands) and we got him, that would not be good for him, or for us."
The comments are in line with Khan's new franchise ethos, on display in a commercial recently produced by the team. If Tebow's heart wasn't invested in playing for the Jaguars, if the hometown kid wasn't "all in," the team didn't want him.
"In a way, this turned out great," Khan said. "If he doesn't want to come here, we would have blown through a draft pick, blown through money, because cash and salary cap, you've blown through all that and we have a player who doesn't want to be there. From their viewpoint, that is a far, far better alternative."
At his introductory news conference Monday, Tebow danced around the question of whether the choice of the Jets or Jaguars was his alone. He highlighted his prior relationship with Jets staffers, explaining that he worked with offensive coordinator Tony Sparano at the Senior Bowl and has spoken to coach Rex Ryan "several times."
Of course, Tebow's choice came down to more than just coaching, even if he doesn't say so. Now that Khan has bought the Jaguars, he's moved on to a tricky sell -- presenting Jacksonville as a sexy and exciting NFL destination. Khan could have upped the offer and made Tebow the face of that movement. That he didn't tells us his feelings here are genuine.