Chiefs’ Chad Henne almost was drafted by the Falcons

PHOENIX — Kansas City backup quarterback Chad Henne almost was drafted by the Falcons in 2008.

Henne must stay ready in case Patrick Mahomes’ right high ankle sprain is aggravated when the Chiefs face the Eagles in Super Bowl LVII at 6:30 p.m. Sunday at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

Henne was ready when Mahomes went down in a divisional playoff game against Jacksonville. He came on and led the Chiefs on a team-record 98-yard touchdown drive.

But he was almost a Falcon.

After the Michael Vick dogfighting situation, the Falcons had narrowed their quarterback list to Matt Ryan and Henne as they prepared for the draft. They were not as high on Joe Flacco, who went 19th overall to Baltimore. The Falcons also needed an left tackle.

If the Falcons had taken Michigan offensive tackle Jake Long third overall, they would have moved back into the first round and picked Henne, who also played at Michigan.

Long went No. 1 overall to the Dolphins, and the Falcons scooped up Ryan with the third pick. The Falcons then traded back into the first round to get USC offensive tackle Sam Baker.

Henne confirmed that he likely was headed to the Falcons. He was very familiar with the scenario.

“Oh yeah, (offensive coordinator) Mike Mularkey and (coach) Mike Smith, they came to Michigan, and they worked me out,” Henne told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Wednesday. “I had a great meeting with them.”

He has stayed in touch with Mularkey.

“I just talked to Mike (Mularkey) the other day,” said Henne, who was drafted in the second round (57th overall) by the Dolphins. “I still stay in contact with him. I met up with him that one year in Jacksonville that we were together.”

Henne, 37, has played with the Dolphins, Jaguars and Chiefs. He’s played in 78 games and made 54 regular-season starts.

“I always felt like it was a good meeting,” Henne said of his pre-draft talks with the Falcons. “They really dove into what I liked or how I would play as quarterback and how I would fit their system. Had a great workout. But they went with Matt, not a bad decision. I think he had a heck of a career and still is (having a heck of a career). I really enjoyed my time (meeting) with them.”

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