IRVING, Texas -- According to multiple sources, the Cowboys are interesting in signing a quarterback if veteran backup Jon Kitna's back injury doesn't improve.
Kitna has endured back issues for parts of the season but has been inactive with the injury the past two weeks. The last time Kitna played in a game, he took a knee to close out the victory over the Buffalo Bills on Nov. 13.
Cowboys officials don't have plans to work out any quarterbacks Friday, but there is a chance if the team places Kitna on injured reserve, ending his season, a new quarterback would be signed.
Kitna, 39, in the final year of his contract and might retire after this season.
"We were probably trying to make sure we didn’t have a guessing game here at backup quarterback relative to Kitna," Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said on KRLD-FM Friday morning regarding the claim for Orton. "I don’t know on Kitna. We just have to see how that goes."
There are plenty of quarterbacks available as free agents and some on practice squad rosters, such as Rudy Carpenter in Tampa Bay. Carpenter spent time with the Cowboys in 2009 training camp and was on their practice squad roster that year before the Buccaneers signed him.
Carpenter played in one preseason game for the Cowboys in 2009 leading the team to a victory vs. Minnesota.
If a player leaves the practice squad to join another team's active roster, he must remain eligible to play for three weeks.
Another possible candidate is Tom Brandstater, who was waived by the St. Louis Rams on Nov. 9. He was in Cowboys camp before getting released on Sept. 3.
So there are quarterbacks with some knowledge of Jason Garrett's offense available. It's just a matter of finding the right one if Kitna's season is done.