Head coach Rex Ryan didn't run the Tebow-based Wildcat at all on Friday night against the Cincinnati Bengals and claims the reason was an unusual agreement he made with his opposing coach, Marvin Lewis, before the exhibition game.
Ryan explained that the Bengals coach called him before the game and asked him not to.
The Jets coach has been boasting all summer about how afraid opposing defenses are going to be handling Tebow this season and claims Lewis' plea is just evidence of that fear.
"I know nobody's worried about Wildcat and all that stuff. It's real easy to stop," a sarcastic Ryan said last week. 'That's why I got a call at 7 a.m. the day before we played by Marvin not wanting to see the Wildcat. I guess I'm the only guy who thinks it has a place in the NFL... me and every defensive coach in the league."
Ryan— who once coached with Lewis in Baltimore— suspiciously turned off the Tebow Wildcat on Friday against the Bengals. It's odd that a coach would not test out his new secret weapon but it's even more strange that a coach wouldn't want to test his defense against the offense— just in case they come across it during the regular season.
Coaches who have made gentleman's agreements before meaningless preseason games are rare but not unheard of.
Last summer, Saints coach Sean Payton called Jim Harbaugh to make some kind of a pact before a pre-season game only to have it fall on the deaf ears of the 49ers coach. The unanswered call led to the Saints unleashing hell and piling on a half-dozen sacks on the unsuspecting 49ers.
Ryan could have blitzed Lewis just the same, but it might not have mattered. Tebow was less than impressive in his debut with Gang Green. There were a couple of completions and first down runs. But there were also a holding call and an interception in about a quarter and a half.
If the Jets want to test out their Wildcat, that's their decision, regardless of what the opposing team wants. Maybe we'll see it next week or maybe Ryan is saving it for the real games.
As for the Bengals, what were they afraid of?