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Jets set for Tebow’s long-awaited debut

It’s Tebow Time. Finally.

After months of hype, a summer highlighted by a shirtless jog through the rain and constant media scrutiny, Tim Tebow is set to make his playing debut for the New York Jets in their preseason opener against the Bengals tonight in Cincinnati.

“I just want to get in there, try to execute the offense and get in and out of checks,” Tebow said.

Coach Rex Ryan plans to have Mark Sanchez and the rest of the starters play about one quarter, and Tebow could play about two quarters with the backups.

Female official debuts

Shannon Eastin became the first woman to officiate an NFL game. Eastin broke the NFL’s on-field gender barrier by serving as the line judge for a seven-man crew working a preseason game between the Green Bay Packers and host San Diego Chargers.

Exhibition games

Peyton Manning got intercepted near the goal line on the game’s opening possession and watched from the sideline the rest of the night as the Denver Broncos beat the host Chicago Bears 31-3. … Philip Rivers had a touchdown, an interception and a fumble in limited action as the host San Diego Chargers beat Green Bay 21-13. … Alex Henery kicked a 51-yard field goal with 12 seconds left to lift the host Philadelphia Eagles to a 24-23 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. … Washington Redskins rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III capped his much-anticipated NFL preseason debut with a touchdown pass in a 7-6 win over the Buffalo Bills at Orchard Park, N.Y. … The New England Patriots edged the New Orleans Saints 7-6 at Foxborough, Mass., when John Kasay’s 41-yard field-goal attempt went wide to the right with 3:07 left. … Baltimore backup Curtis Painter threw three second-half TD passes to lead the Ravens to a 31-17 preseason win over the host Atlanta Falcons.

Around the league

Panthers coach Ron Rivera says three-time Pro Bowl middle linebacker Jon Beason is not expected to play in Saturday night’s preseason home opener against the Houston Texans after injuring his left hamstring. … Trent Richardson won’t play in the Browns’ first preseason game after having left knee surgery.

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