UPDATE: According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Jets and Broncos finally completed a trade for Tim Tebow Wednesday evening.
The deal hit a snag earlier because language in Tebow's contract called for the Jets to pay the Broncos up to $5M. In the end, Schefter reported the Jets agreed to pay half that amount.
He also reported that Tebow had the choice to pick between the Jets and Jaguars, and apparently, he chose New York.
Two big pieces of news broke at just about the same time Wednesday afternoon.
Let's start with Tim Tebow. He's headed to the Jets along with a seventh-round pick in exchange for a fourth-rounder and a sixth-rounder, according to Mike Klis of The Denver Post.
The Jets, of course, have Mark Sanchez as their starter and handed him a contract extension earlier this month. Sanchez has completed 55.3 percent of his passes in three NFL seasons, to go along with a 6.51 yards per attempt average.
Before the Jets acquired Tebow, cornerback Antonio Cromartie Tweeted the following:
Y bring Tebow in when we need to bring in more Weapons for @Mark_Sanchez let's build the team around him. We already signed to 3 year ext.
I'm guessing that will be a bit of an awkward first meeting, and that there will be several cameras present when it takes place.
Meanwhile, Roger Goodell dropped the hammer on the Saints for the bounty scandal. Head coach Sean Payton is suspended for the entire 2012 season. General manager Mickey Loomis is suspended eight games. Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, who has sinced moved on to the Rams, is suspended indefinitely. And Saints assistant head coach/linebackers coach Joe Vitt is out six games. All suspensions are without pay.
The Saints are also fined $500,000. AND New Orleans loses a second-round pick in each of the next two drafts (2012 and 2013).
If you're wondering how the draft pick affects the Eagles' second-round selections, the Saints were scheduled to pick 27th. The Eagles, meanwhile, have picks 14 and 19 (from the Kevin Kolb deal), so those selections are not affected. The Eagles swapped to the 89th pick in the third round with yesterday's DeMeco Ryans trade. That obviously now becomes the 88th overall pick.
The most surprising part of the punishment has to be Payton getting a full season. The Saints went 13-3 a year ago and advanced to the divisional round of the playoffs before falling to the 49ers. They have been unable to come to terms on a new contract with Drew Brees and have instead used the franchise tag, which he hasn't signed.
We'll soon find out what this means for Steve Spagnuolo, who took New Orleans' defensive coordinator job this offseason and could now be forced into some head-coaching duties.
If Goodell wanted to make sure no one accused him of going soft on the Saints, I'd say he accomplished his goal. And while New Orleans was likely not the only team employing these practices, chances are this punishment will do enough to scare off future coaches and players from using bounties. That's a good thing for the game, and the league.
Punishments for individual Saints players are still pending.
Going forward, each NFL owner and coach must confirm to Goodell in writing by March 30 that it is not employing any type of bounty program. And that requirement figures to stick for future years.
Earlier today, I posted on what they're saying about the Eagles' acquisition of Ryans.