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Tim Tebow to return to NFL as an Eagle (+video)

Tim Tebow is expected to sign a one-year contract with the Eagles on Monday. Tebow has remained one of the most popular NFL players, in part because he has fans who follow him because of his strong Christian beliefs.

It's Tebow Time in the City of Brotherly Love.

Tim Tebow is expected to sign a one-year contract with the Eagles on Monday, according to three people familiar with the deal. The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Sunday because the contract hasn't been finalized.

Tebow hasn't played in the NFL since 2012 with the New York Jets. He was released by the New England Patriots before the 2013 season and spent last year working in television as an analyst for the SEC Network and ESPN.

Despite being out of the league, the 27-year-old Tebow remained one of the most popular players around. He has a legion of fans who follow him because of his strong Christian beliefs.

The former Heisman Trophy winner led Florida to two national titles and was a first-round pick by Denver in 2010. He started 16 games during two seasons with the Broncos, including a playoff victory over Pittsburgh in January 2012. Tebow was traded to the Jets after Denver signed Peyton Manning.

The 27-year-old Tebow joins quarterbacks Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez, Matt Barkley and G.J. Kinne on Philadelphia's roster. The addition of Tebow would be the latest move in a stunning offseason for coach Chip Kelly. He traded Nick Foles, LeSean McCoy and allowed Jeremy Maclin to leave in free agency.

Tebow worked out for the Eagles last month and Kelly later said he's always "been a fan of Tim."

Tebow had some success in Denver, but his inaccurate passing and lack of pocket presence was an issue. His strength has been running the ball or improvising. Tebow has completed just 47.9 percent of his passes for 2,422 yards, 17 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He has 989 yards rushing, a 5.0 average yards per carry and 12 TDs.

Tebow worked with former major league pitcher Tom House on improving his mechanics. He joins the Eagles in time to start their offseason program this week.

While some are hailing the move and some are criticizing it, SB Nation writer Rodger Sherman writes that it's probably not something to get too worked up about.

But all things considered, this probably isn't that big a deal either way. Even in the best-case scenario, Tim Tebow isn't supposed to be the team's primary QB -- not by a long shot. We're getting incredibly worked up about a player who most likely won't play a major role even if he does make an NFL team.

But if anybody has the potential to help him turn around his career, wouldn't it be Kelly, a guy with a history of QB successes?

... Chip Kelly has done good things with players and teams that weren't supposed to do good things. He's been particularly helpful with quarterbacks. Mark Sanchez looked good for the Eagles last year. Mark Sanchez!

Who knows if anything will come of Tebow. He's spent a long time out of the league and had tangible flaws with his game. But the only thing Kelly is risking is a preseason roster spot. If Kelly thinks there's a reward, he deserves some benefit of the doubt

Follow Rob Maaddi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AP_RobMaaddi

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