Chiefs Looking at Henson

Rumors are flying around NFL circles that the Chiefs are in the Drew Henson sweepstakes. The former Michigan Wolverine is now property of the Houston Texans but he won't be for long.

The Kansas City Chiefs are looking to upgrade their quarterback position. Trent Green is not in danger of losing his job but its obvious that Kansas City wants to begin developing a young quarterback.

Kansas City has never developed a young quarterback in their history. Now might be a good time to try it again. Green has played every game the last three seasons but he's no spring chicken as far as NFL quarterbacks. Green probably could play at high level for another two seasons and the Chiefs would be wise to step up now and find a successor for Green.

Enter Drew Henson the soon to be released property of the New York Yankees. After third basemen Aaron Boone went down with a season ending injury a week ago, the Yankees continue to negotiate a $12 million settlement with Henson and his agent.

The Houston Texans have the draft rights to Henson since they selected him in the sixth round last year. They have until the day of the April draft to sign him or they lose his rights.

The Texans have no interest in trying to sign Henson; instead they are talking to other teams about a sign and trade deal. Houston is happy with quarterback David Carr and they've invested $49 million in him and are unlikely to do anything to jeopardize his development.

Five teams have come forward Buffalo, Dallas, Green Bay, Miami, Pittsburgh and Kansas City. As we reported two weeks ago, the Chiefs are also interested in CFL standout Ricky Ray. The Chiefs have worked him out twice and are also in an arms race with the Cowboys and Steelers for his services.

But Henson would clearly have more upside than Ray. Ray is more ready to play now whereas Henson would need a couple years as an understudy before becoming a starter. He could learn a lot from playing behind Green the next two years.

After the 2005 season Green will be 35 years old and the Chiefs are wise to start the process now and look for his eventual successor.

Chiefs head coach Dick Vermeil has already made it clear he'd like to upgrade the wide receiver position and also add some depth to the offense line.

But quarterback was not an area that the team had previously talked about upgrading.

Todd Collins is the back-up now and Jonathan Quinn will become a free agent so regardless if they trade for Henson or sign Ray, they'll need to bring in a clipboard quarterback for the 2004 season.

Henson and the Yankees are close to a buyout of his contract. All MLB players' contracts are guaranteed so unless they workout a settlement, the Yankees are liable for the remaining portion of his contract.

As for the Chiefs and how serious their efforts will be to attract Henson to Kansas City, remains to be seen. But it's a good sign that they're looking that far down the road.


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