Tim Tebow (left) and Mark Sanchez, the NFL’s odd couple. (Elaine Thompson / AP)

Anonymous comments by his New York Jets teammates, including one who said “he’s terrible,” left backup quarterback Tim Tebow trying to maintain a positive attitude Wednesday.

Tebow said he felt “frustration and I guess some sadness” after a New York Daily News report that quoted many in the organization who were highly critical of Tebow — off the record.

“This is something I can’t control,” Tebow said (via the Daily News). “I can control my attitude, my effort and my work ethic. Those are things that will never change based on what anybody says. … I’ve had criticism somewhat my whole life playing football. You got to do your best at handling it. On one side, you try to make it motivate you. But at the same time, it always has somewhat of an effect on you. You’re human. It’s not always fun having people saying negative things about you, but you try to be stronger from it. It always has made me stronger in the past and it will continue to make me stronger.”

Another starter told the Daily News’ Manish Mehta that he saw Tebow, who led the Denver Broncos to the playoff last season, as more of a gimmick player, the “Wildcat guy.” It would be understandable if Tebow were to devote time to trying to match anonymous quotes to teammates, but he said he won’t do that. 

“That’s not who I am,” Tebow said. “I’m more secure in who I am as a person, as a football player than that to look and wonder or wonder why. I got a bunch of great relationships in this locker room.”

Coach Rex Ryan ripped his players Wednesday, telling them their anonymous criticism was cowardly, ESPN New York reported. Later, he defended Tebow, saying, “Every single day when he hits the field, he works about as hard as anybody I’ve seen. He stays longer than probably every player we have, working on those skills,” Ryan said. “He’s done everything we’ve asked him to do.”

And the whole point of obtaining Tebow in a trade with the Broncos after they signed Peyton Manning, Ryan reminded reporters, was not to make him the No. 1 QB.

“Tim Tebow came here to be the backup quarterback. We never brought him in here, to be the starting quarterback. We already had a starting quarterback in Mark Sanchez,” Ryan said. “I thought I was clear on that from the day we brought Tim in here. But what we were also clear on is that he’s a football player and we’re going to use him in different roles.”

Sanchez’s take? “I feel for Tim. That [stinks], it just [stinks]. It can’t feel good. But at the same time, I’ve been there. You wake up the next day and you keep playing.”

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