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Tim Tebow, New York Jets look destined to part ways

The circus might remain in the Big Apple next year as long as Rex Ryan is coaching the New York Jets, but Tebowmania will have to find a new home.

Wednesday's decision to start Mark Sanchez this weekend against the Jacksonville Jaguars helped confirm what has been obvious in New York for a while. This Jets coaching staff has no use for Tim Tebow.

Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News says the team never seriously considered Tebow to start. Greg McElroy, a 2011 seventh-round draft pick -- and Tebow's SEC rival -- is seen as a more legitimate threat to Sanchez. That says it all.

It's hard to see any way that Tebow will stick around in New York in 2013 unless Ryan is fired. Tebow is due $2.5 million next year, which doesn't sound like much for a backup quarterback, until you realize he's a backup quarterback in name only. If the coaching staff won't play Tebow now, this late in a miserable season, they'll never have a use for him.

Even Ryan and Jets owner Woody Johnson would have to admit Tebow's presence has proven to be a distraction. Mehta reported that Johnson reportedly pushed for McElroy to start Sunday, so even the publicity-loving owner doesn't want to see him start.

Tebow could wind up being released or traded for a late-round conditional draft pick. Crazier things have happened than Tebow having another chance to start elsewhere. (Like Tebow's 2011 season when he led the Denver Broncos on an improbable playoff run.) But this year with the Jets has proven to be a big setback in Tebow's career.

The Broncos didn't want to keep Tebow as a starter. The Jets don't seem to want him as a backup. Tebow likely will be wandering through the football wilderness again soon, looking for a home.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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