NFL Twitterpocalypse as Tebow is traded, Sean Payton suspended

Two of the biggest developments of the NFL offseason occurred almost simultaneously on Wednesday, causing a flurry of confusion and hilarity on Twitter. 


Kevin Collier


Published Mar 21, 2012   Updated Jun 2, 2021, 7:42 pm CDT

Hot off the heels of news that legendary quarterback Peyton Manning had signed with the Denver Broncos, two other enormous NFL stories broke within minutes of each other.

Tim Tebow, the divisive Broncos quarterback with a heart of gold, was traded to the New York Jets. Almost immediately after, the NFL announced that New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton was suspended for a year after the league found that he ran a “bounty” program, which paid the team’s defensive players bonuses for injuring opposing players.

Though both stories got a significant stir on Twitter—“Payton” has been mentioned at least 22,000 times Wednesday and “Tebow” 124,000 times, according to the Topsy search engine—only Tebow inspired many jokes. Perhaps that’s because the Internet has had so much practice making fun of him.

(For the record, recent reports indicate that the Tebow trade might be nullified after the teams disagreed on the fine print.)

Either way, the following is a tale of two Twitter trends: people laughing at the Tebow trade and others miffed at Payton’s punishment.

Photo by hectorir

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*First Published: Mar 21, 2012, 6:12 pm CDT