Retailers in the New York-metro area wasted little time slashing prices on Tim Tebow merchandise, after New York Jets officials announced in late-April that the often-polarizing quarterback has been released from the squad.
“Tim-sanity” is officially over in New York, at least on the playing field. However, New York sports fans are enjoying one last opportunity to become a part of Tebow’s legacy in the Big Apple, by scooping up some of his signature items, at decidedly “Tim-sane” bargains.
Prices on green-and-white No. 15 Tim Tebow t-shirts and jerseys held steady all week, even after the Jets selected West Virginia’s Geno Smith in the second round of this year’s NFL Draft. The Jets’ selection of Smith spelled doom for Tebow, as the young prospect became the sixth quarterback on the team’s roster.
Even after releasing Tebow, the Jets still have Mark Sanchez, Greg McElroy, David Garrard, Matt Simms and Smith on hand to bolster their quarterback position.
But once the Jets made it official on April 29 that Tebow would not be returning to the MetLife Stadium field in 2013, retailers began relegating his gear to the clearance racks, alongside the jerseys of former New York athletes such as former New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey.
Half-Priced Tebow Gear
By midday on April 29, New York Jets Tim Tebow Nike brand kid’s t-shirts, once priced $22, were marked down to $11 at Champs Sports in Hicksville, New York.
The wacky prices didn’t stop there, as official Nike Tebow Jets jerseys, were slashed below the $100 mark for the first time since the Jets signed him a year ago.
Just a few feet away, other Tebow merchandise rested unassumingly in the Champs Sports clearance racks. Similarily, the Macy’s and Target stores at Broadway Mall had Tebow gear drastically marked down, but it was all sold out by the end of the Monday, April 29 shopping day.
New York retailers appear to be trying to catch up with the official NFL Fan Shop, where Tebow Jets jerseys are marked down to just $29.97.
Is anyone buying?
“The prices are great, but it’s not fashionable to wear a jersey featuring a player that isn’t on the team anymore,” said 24-year-old Hicksville resident Tara Painter. “I am a huge Tebow fan, but I wouldn’t buy a Jets jersey with his name on it. I don’t care how low they mark the prices down.”
Another New Yorker said she plans to take a wait-and-see approach on the Jets Tebow jerseys, to see just how low the prices will get.
“I think retailers are going to start getting desperate if no one is buying,” said 26-year-old Westbury resident Dana Ashley, a longtime Jets season-ticket holder. “Right now, Tebow jerseys are about 50% off. But maybe in a couple weeks, the discounts will be even greater when stores need to clear out their inventory for the season ahead.”
The Tim Tebow era in the Big Apple, ended with him taking just 72 offensive snaps with the Jets. Tebow ended up costing the Jets a fourth-round draft pick and $1.5 million in salary, along with $2.5 million the team had to pay to the Denver Broncos.
Eric Holden, a lifelong New York resident, is a New York Jets fan who will be cheering on Tim Tebow, regardless of where he ends up. Follow him on Twitter @ericholden.