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Back to the future

Spring training is just a few weeks away, while the football season ended last night at Reliant Stadium. But for Drew Henson, baseball is in his rearview mirror and a rededication to the pigskin is about to commence.

Texans officials acknowledged Monday that Henson, the former Michigan quarterback and Houston's sixth-round draft pick last year, will work out for selected teams at the Texans' training facility on Thursday, Feb. 12.

Henson signed a six-year contract to play third base for the New York Yankees in 2001 but was never able to make it to the Bronx, save for a few call-ups. He hit just .234 for Triple-A Columbus last season.

The Texans already have a full complement of quarterbacks on the roster, including 2002 No. 1 overall pick David Carr. So general manager Charley Casserly will be looking to broker a trade for Henson to a team in search of a young signal-caller. There will be no shortage of suitors.

The Texans own Henson's rights until Apr. 24, the first day of the 2004 NFL Draft. Any trade would have to be made between the start of free agency and then. Henson could put his name back in the draft hopper, but in dealing through the Texans he could have more input into his future destination.

What would Henson command in terms of a draft pick? We won't speculate. But if whispers are to be heeded, a draft that has already produced running back Domanick Davis and wide receiver Andre Johnson could net even more value with the Henson pick.

Of course, most of his trade value is up to Henson himself, which is why next Thursday's workout is so crucial for a player who hasn't lined up under center since 2000. Several sources have reported that Henson, an IMG client, has been working out at IMG's training facility in Bradenton, Fla.

         In three
             seasons in Ann Arbor, Henson completed 214 of 374 passes (57.2
         percent) for 2,946 yards with 24 touchdowns and seven interceptions.
         In 2000, he threw for 2,146 yards with 18 touchdowns and just four
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