Rex: Tebow is the No. 2 QB

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- It’s been a tough year for Tim Tebow.

At least that’s how his coach Rex Ryan sees it. But Ryan said that despite two fractured ribs and a lack of production in specially designed wildcat/option plays, Tebow is still the Jets' No. 2 quarterback.

"I just feel better about Tim in that role," Ryan said. "I feel he gives us the best opportunity and that’s why I’ve said all along he’s our No. 2 quarterback and that’s how I feel."

Although Tebow has been active for the Patriots and Jacksonville games, he hasn’t been sent into a game since the Jets played the Rams on Nov. 18. Even now, with his ribs improving but still far from perfect, Ryan sees his role changing. Rather than using Tebow as a personal protector and situational quarterback, Ryan would put him in as a more traditional backup, to run the conventional offense in the event of injury to starter Mark Sanchez.

“I don’t really see him in that (punt team) role,” Ryan said. “As far as the wildcat obviously (not) with the ribs the way they are. Hopefully once we get the OK with those ribs we can expand that but that’s probably not necessarily going to be a big factor in our game plan.”

Ryan said there have been no complications with Tebow’s injury, and that he has shown notable improvement in the last week.

The one game that Tebow was not active, third-string quarterback Greg McElroy was sent in for a struggling Sanchez and led the team into the end zone and to a 7-6 win over the visiting Cardinals.

“He’s been cleared to play all that time,” Ryan said. “I’m more comfortable with him now playing than I was a few weeks ago.”

McElroy’s solid pinch performance hasn’t gotten him ahead in the rotation however.