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Tim Tebow finishes preseason with solid effort

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Tim Tebow, the NFL's ultimate Rorschach test, played two full quarters of Thursday's preseason finale. If this was his final NFL performance, he went out in typical exciting, confounding, Tebowian style.

Fans of Tebow will point to the box score and declare victory. Tebow completed 11 of 17 passes for 189 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in a 24-18 loss to the New York Jets. He connected on a nice 45-yard bomb and threw a beautiful 18-yard touchdown drive to Rasheed Bailey. He ran the two-minute drill well and the Eagles scored 15 points in his two quarters of play. Matt Barkley only led the Eagles to three points.

Tebow detractors will see the same weaknesses that are there every time he plays. He was mechanical and slow going through his reads, and often held the ball too long. He threw an ugly interception on a pass that never had a chance.

Still, it was undeniably Tebow's best effort of the preseason. He finished the preseason with 286 yards on 36 throws, along with 82 rushing yards on 14 carries. Barkley, who is the superior pocket passer, did not particularly do anything to impress Thursday night.

It comes down to what coach Chip Kelly wants to do with his third quarterback spot. Barkley would be the better option as a starter if injuries strike Sam Bradford and Mark Sanchez, but it's not like Barkley would be a good option.

Tebow has been talked up as a potential trick play or two-point conversion specialist, but is that worth a roster spot? And aren't players like DeMarco Murray, Ryan Mathews and Sam Bradford much better options on two-point conversions?

"I'm not going to worry about what I can't control," Tebow said after the game when asked what he expected over the next 48 hours.

One concern for Tebow and Barkley: Kelly could decide to just keep two quarterbacks on the roster, rendering this overexposed quarterback competition futile for all parties.

UPDATE: The Eagles traded Barkley to the Arizona Cardinals on Friday in exchange for a conditional 2016 draft pick.

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