Drew Henson's choice of baseball over football, the pursuit at which he truly excels, can be baffling. He turned his back on a legitimate chance at NFL stardom for the life of a struggling minor leaguer. The seeming illogic lent credence to reports that he would void the three years and $12 million left on his Yankees contract and return to the gridiron, speculation the third baseman dismissed after New York called him up last Friday. "I play baseball because I love it," he said.
Despite mediocre stats, Henson, 23, has shown enough power to lead Yankees manager Joe Torre to say, "He's going to be a big league player." Hey, Mike Schmidt hit .196 with 136 strikeouts in 132 games as an error-prone rookie, and he turned out O.K. Henson's no Schmidt, but his is an admirable persistence: It defies conventional wisdom and comes from the heart. Today Henson has pinstripes on his back and a locker next to Roger Clemens. For the next three years he can chase a dream and make a fortune. We should all be so lucky.
— Daniel G. Habib
The fact is, Henson is a far better quarterback than he is a third baseman. Before the 2002 draft a wise old Cowboys scout, Jim Garrett, showed me a report he'd written on Henson, even though it had been almost two years since Henson took a snap at Michigan. The report said Henson could be the next Troy Aikman. "If he was on the board," Garrett said, "he'd be the best player in this draft." Can any baseball scout say that if Henson sticks with it he'll be the best player in baseball? Not with a straight face. As for the time he's been out of football, it's no big problem. Roger Staubach missed four years. How'd he do when he got out of the Navy?
The Texans made a nice move last spring by picking Henson in the sixth round, with an eye toward trading him. Wouldn't it make sense for a team like the Packers to deal its first-round pick for a guy who has a shot at greatness? Have Henson shadow Brett Favre for two years. Henson's passion would be rekindled, and he'd be doing what he's best at. Starr, Favre, Henson. Lambeau Field. It could all be yours, kid.
— Peter King