Chad Henne was not supposed to be the postseason hero for the Kansas City Chiefs, the man partly responsible for sending the defending Super Bowl champions to their third consecutive AFC Championship Game. Henne, filling in for Patrick Mahomes after the star quarterback suffered a concussion, was tasked with preserving the Chiefs' second half lead -- making the two biggest plays of his career on back-to-back plays to seal the 22-17 victory.
The win was Henne's first in the NFL since 2013, a long time coming for the long time backup quarterback. Henne -- who actually has a Super Bowl ring with the Chiefs -- finally had the opportunity to make his own mark in the playoffs. Sunday's win over the Cleveland Browns was the first time Henne ever took a postseason snap, despite playing 14 years in the NFL.
Here are five interesting facts about the Chiefs' playoff hero on Sunday:
NFL quarterback for 14 seasons, mostly as a backup
Henne was a second-round draft pick by the Miami Dolphins in 2008, starting 31 games for the team in four seasons and completing 60.6% of his passes with 31 touchdowns and 37 interceptions. Henne spent the next five seasons in Jacksonville -- mostly as a backup -- completing 57.6% of his passes with 27 touchdowns and 26 interceptions.
Henne signed with the Chiefs in the 2018 season and didn't take a snap in the 2019 season due to a fractured ankle (Henne was on injured reserve when Matt Moore started in place of Patrick Mahomes). Henne was the backup quarterback for Kansas City's Super Bowl run, earning his first Super Bowl ring.
Henne had been on an NFL roster for eight postseason games before Sunday, but had never previously played in a playoff game. He has 60 touchdown passes to 63 interceptions (76.1 rating in his career).
Holds several Michigan passing records
Henne is Michigan's all-time passing leader in completions (828), attempts (1,387), yards (9,715), and touchdowns (87). His 87 touchdown passes are third in Big Ten history, behind J.T. Barrett (104) and Drew Brees (90). He beat Tim Tebow and the Florida Gators in his final college game, winning the Capitol One Bowl MVP honors.
Was Michigan's starting QB when it was upset by Appalachian State
Henne was a starting quarterback for Michigan for several seasons in the mid-2000s, and played an integral role in one of the biggest upsets in college football history. Michigan, ranked fifth in the country to start the season, lost to Football Championship Subdivision school Appalachian State in the season opener in 2007 -- Henne's senior season.
Henne completed 19 of 37 passes for 233 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. He failed to convert a fourth down pass and threw his lone interception in the fourth quarter when Michigan was trailing. The Wolverines were national championship contenders prior to the game and never recovered, falling out of the Associated Press poll after the loss (they finished 18th in final poll).
Graduated from the same high school as Kerry Collins
Henne went to Wilson High School in West Lawn, Pennsylvania -- located an hour outside of Philadelphia in the Reading area. This is the same high school that former Penn State and NFL standout Kerry Collins graduated from. Collins, who led the New York Giants to Super Bowl XXXV and made two Pro Bowls, is 20th in NFL history with 40,922 passing yards. He graduated from Wilson in 1991.
Former Pennsylvania high school player of the year
Henne was the state's top player in his senior year at Wilson, earning Gatorade Player of the Year honors. Other Pennsylvania Gatorade Player of the Year winners that had standout NFL careers include Lavar Arrington (1996) and Kyle Brady (1989). Former college standout quarterbacks from Pennsylvania to win the award include Ron Powlus (1992) and Jeff Smoker (1999).
Henne threw for 7,071 passing yards in his high school career, which was fourth-most all-time in PIAA history when he graduated in 2004. He was also the PIAA runner-up in the javelin his senior year.