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Old 05-01-2004   #1
Wolf
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Default Drew Henson starts minicamp

Henson back where better suited: on football field
By STEPHEN HAWKINS, AP Sports Writer
May 1, 2004

IRVING, Texas (AP) -- When Drew Henson started really thinking about what would make him happy, he realized late last summer that it wasn't fielding grounders and struggling to hit curveballs.

He was pursuing the wrong sport.

``As much as I was trying to get to New York and get to the big leagues, I said to myself, `Is this going to make me happy for the next 10 or 12 years?','' Henson said Saturday, the second day of the Dallas Cowboys' rookie minicamp.

``At the same time, the more I thought about football, the more I missed it and thought that as I moved forward with my career, I'm better suited to be a quarterback.''

Henson is finally back on the football field after three mediocre seasons as a minor leaguer in the Yankees' organization, including a .234 batting average with 122 strikeouts and 28 errors at third base in Triple-A last season.

There aren't any defenders rushing him when he throws yet, and he's not even in pads, but Henson is happy to be playing football again. His last game was New Year's Day 2001 in the Citrus Bowl with Michigan.

``It's just nice to get back and put a uniform on and get in the huddle and call plays and get back to some things I feel comfortable with,'' he said.

Henson started working himself back into football shape in November and gave up $12 million to leave the Yankees. The Houston Texans, who owned his rights, traded him to the Cowboys in March.

The quarterback signed an eight-year contract with Dallas that guarantees him $3.5 million and can be voided after four years. Then he started learning his playbook.

Coach Bill Parcells doesn't dismiss the thought of Henson playing this season, but wants to take it slow with the 24-year-old after so much time away.

``My best guess is he's probably going to need a little while. It's like most everybody else,'' Parcells said. ``I just think it's he's getting back in tune. Give him enough opportunity to get back in tune with it and see what he can do.''

Henson is getting plenty of snaps this weekend. The only other quarterback in camp is Brett Mitchell, a rookie free agent signed for a weekend tryout and to provide Henson an occasional break.

Quincy Carter is the incumbent starter at quarterback, and the Cowboys insist nothing has happened to change his role -- yet. Chad Hutchinson, who struggled as a starter in 2002 after ending a four-year pro baseball career to sign with Dallas, is playing in NFL Europe.

But the Cowboys love Henson's size (6-foot-4, 223 pounds) and strong arm. In three seasons at Michigan, he completed 214 of 374 passes (57 percent) for 2,945 yards and 24 touchdowns, but started just eight games, all his junior year, after playing behind Tom Brady.

Henson wants to take things in order, and isn't worried about when he will be in position to compete for the Cowboys' starting job.

``That's a long ways off for me right now,'' Henson said. ``Coach Parcells has been great not trying to give me too much too early, taking things step by step, and the first was to get into the system and understand things.''

Henson is wearing No. 11, the same number worn by past Parcells-coached quarterbacks who played in Super Bowls: Phil Simms with the New York Giants and Drew Bledsoe in New England. Henson picked the jersey, which Parcells insists was just a coincidence.

``I swear I didn't even know that was his number,'' Parcells said. ``The truth of the matter is when we were on the field for a second, I thought, `Oh, they gave him No. 5,' which is the other guy (Mitchell). I didn't know, I swear.''

But both can only hope to have similar results -- one day.
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Old 05-01-2004   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolf
But both can only hope to have similar results -- one day.
I am one that hopes that doesnt happen
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Old 05-01-2004   #3
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the next time we play we play the cowpokes during the season it should be on National Television. Carr vs Henson!
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Old 05-01-2004   #4
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Honestly I'm not a Cowboy fan. I've never had much interest in what they were doing up there in the past and back in the day I always had much more interest in what was happening in Pittsburgh, Cleveland, and Cincinnati (for obvious reasons). I used to get into the Cowboy hating thing but early last season I finally said goodbye to the urge to hate on the Cowboys. It wasn't that I "warmed up" to them or suddenly decided the Jerry Jones wasn't all that bad or anything. I just reached a point where they simply weren't relevant anymore. Unless they're on the opposite sideline from the Texans it's not something I care about.

The exception to this is Henson. Because of the obvious connection he has to the Texans I'm going to be watching him a little. I actually hope he turns into a good QB (though obviously I always want to beat him every single time they line up against the Texans).
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Old 05-01-2004   #5
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Default Number doesn't matter

undefinedQuite frankly, it doesn't matter what number the guy wears, if he cannot come back to play football, like when at michigan, all the comparisons can go by the side of the road. This is a different time and game in the nfl and if he cannot make the adjustments back to game speed, quincy will still have the starting job! :o
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Old 05-01-2004   #6
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I'm curious also in Henson's development. I just want to see if the hype about him is justified. I have a gut feeling that he will unseat Carter sooner rather then later.
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Old 05-02-2004   #7
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Well once every decade possibly, unless we both make it to the superbowl. That'd be cool. Henson Vs Carr in the SB, talk about the drama that will bring hehe.
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Old 05-02-2004   #8
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Being an Oilers fan when they were around never liked Cowboys either but for first time ever respect what is going on there. I think even more interesting if Henson makes it is who they will bring in to guide him (veteran) and be ready to replace Carter - Collins, Warner?
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