updated 08/31/2013 AT 5:00 PM ET
•originally published 08/31/2013 AT 5:15 PM ET
“I will remain in relentless pursuit of continuing my lifelong dream of being an NFL quarterback,” he Tweeted Saturday.
He has now been let go by his third team in 18 months. With the regular season just five days away, his chances of immediately catching on with another team seem slim.
Tebow thanked owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels after failing to survive New England’s mandatory roster cut to 53 players.
He also thanked the “entire Patriots organization for giving me the opportunity to be a part of such a classy organization.”
Tebow’s stay with the Patriots lasted just under 12 weeks and could be the end of his NFL career. The Heisman Trophy winner played in three of New England’s four preseason games and was sacked four times in the finale, a 28-20 win over the New York Giants on Thursday night.
The Patriots have carried just two quarterbacks in three of the past four seasons. And with Ryan Mallett entrenched as the backup to Tom Brady, Tebow’s challenge was a difficult one, even before the preseason started. Then, he went out and posted a quarterback rating of just 47.2 and threw two touchdown passes to go with two interceptions and seven sacks.
When New England signed him June 11, it appeared Belichick might find other positions for him, given his versatility and mobility. But Tebow never worked out with any unit other than the quarterbacks.
Tebow previously played for the Denver Broncos and New York Jets. In college, he was a part of two national championship teams at Florida.
Tebow’s last play with the Patriots, and perhaps in the NFL, was a 9-yard touchdown to rookie free agent Quentin Sims with six seconds left against the Giants.
Tebow became the center ring of a media circus last season with the Jets as quarterback Mark Sanchez struggled. But Tebow threw just eight passes that season and was released April 29. He wasn’t picked up until six weeks later, when he took part in the first day of the Patriots’ three-day minicamp.
With Brady at quarterback and Belichick adept at handling distractions, Tebow’s profile was much lower in New England.
“First and foremost, I just want to thank the Patriots for giving me an opportunity,” Tebow said after his first practice. “I’m looking forward to working hard every single day and getting a lot better and learning under some great people. So that’s all I got, but thank you all so much and God bless. I’m sure we’ll be talking more soon.”