Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley
The Dallas Cowboys announced Saturday they have traded starting cornerback Anthony Henry for Lions quarterback Jon Kitna. And who could blame the Lions for doing business with the Cowboys? Based strictly on last season's results, it looks like Detroit fleeced the Cowboys on the Roy Williams deal.
Now the Lions have traded a quarterback who they were about to release for a starting cornerback. I understand that the Cowboys would have had competition for Kitna had he hit the open market, but did they really need to trade a player of Henry's value?
Henry is not even the player the Cowboys have been shopping. That would be safety Roy Williams. Trading Williams for Kitna would have made more sense than giving up Henry. The Lions were probably hoping to land a late-round draft pick, at the most, for Kitna. Now, they have a player who started 16 games for the Cowboys in 2008.
The Cowboys could argue that Kitna's contract is better than Henry's, but there's not a huge difference. Kitna will make about $2 million in 2009 and Henry will make $3.6 milllion. Both players are entering the final year of their deals.
Now that we've established that it's a strange deal, I do think Kitna is a good fit for the Cowboys. Jerry Jones wants Roy Williams to become his No. 1 receiver -- and the wide receiver had his best season as a pro with Kitna in 2006. Kitna is not going to compete with Romo for the starting job, but he's still good enough to pose a threat if Romo starts piling up turnovers.
Of the crop that included quarterbacks such as Kyle Boller, Rex Grossman, Jeff Garcia, Byron Leftwich and Charlie Batch, I thought Kitna was the best option. He is three years younger than Garcia and he is a guy who could step in and win some games if Romo gets hurt again. The Cowboys learned a tough lesson about backup quarterbacks in 2008.
Maybe that has something to do with them being a little overzealous in going after Kitna.