Tim Tebow wants to be an NFL tight end, but he isn't one yet. Despite all of the pomp and circumstance of the former quarterback coming out of retirement to sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars to try his hand at a position he once refused to transition to, the fact remains he hasn't yet made the team. So when the list of invites was being constructed for the famed "Tight End University" in Nashville, Tennessee -- led by All-Pro tight end George Kittle and retired Pro Bowler Greg Olsen -- Tebow didn't get a call. They both recently explained why they opted to forgo bringing in Tebow, making it clear it's nothing personal.
"So, nothing against Tim Tebow, but I found it hard to invite -- I wish nothing but the best for Tim Tebow, and I hope he has a fantastic season playing tight end -- but it's hard for me not to invite a backup tight end on, let's say the New York Giants, as opposed to inviting a guy who just started playing the tight end position because we do have limited spots," Kittle said, via David Bonilla of 49erswebzone.com. "I wish I could make it so every NFL tight end can come, [so] it's accessible to everybody. But what we tried to do this year, we wanted to pay for everything for all the tight ends that come to kind of make it a special event for all tight ends."
Kittle went on to note this year's class was originally expected to hover around "20 guys" but ballooned to 47 and then more than 50, which led to the hotel they're staying in to run out of rooms to accommodate them. And while Kittle was more PR-friendly with his explanation regarding Tebow, Olsen cut straight to the point.
"If he's on a roster this year, and he plays tight end, we would love to have him," Olsen said. "We would love to work with him. Once he's officially a tight end, we would love to work with him."
Tebow is participating in Jaguars minicamp as one of six tight ends, with the other five having dedicated their career to the position and, as such, have a decided edge on him leading into training camp. He'll have to hit the ground running against in a battle against Chris Manhertz, Luke Farrell, Tyler Davis, James O'Shaughnessy and Ben Ellefson. Of the group, Tebow isn't the only one reuniting with Meyer. Farrell is the team's rookie fifth-round pick out of Ohio State, and spent time being coached by Meyer before the latter retired from the collegiate ranks following the 2018 season after a controversial year with the school.
Tebow's competition also extends to the actual contract on Manhertz, who signed a two-year, $6.65 million deal in free agency this offseason as well as young upstarts like Davis and Ellefson. Additionally, it's key to note Manhertz did receive an invite from Kittle and Olsen -- the first Jaguar to ever have his attendance at the event confirmed.
A longtime quarterback who had a short stint of glory with the Denver Broncos before the wheels fell off of his career at the position, Tebow was once proposed the idea of changing positions but instead opted not to and went on to later retire from the league entirely, then trying his hand at baseball with the New York Mets before retiring from that sport as well. All it took for him to reconsider his NFL conversion, apparently, was Meyer being hired in Jacksonville.
All it'll take for Kittle and Olsen to reconsider him for one of their highly coveted "Tight End University" seats is, well, for him to actually become a tight end.