Jon Kitna

Jon Kitna

Infobox NFLactive

currentteam=Detroit Lions
birthdate=birth date and age|1972|9|21
birthplace=Tacoma, Washington
debutteam=Seattle Seahawks
* 1997 NFL Europe World Bowl MVP
* 2003 NFL Comeback Player of the Year
college=Central Washington
* Barcelona Dragons (1997)
* Seattle Seahawks (1997-2000)
* Cincinnati Bengals (2001-2005)
* Detroit Lions (2006-present)
statlabel2=Passing yards
statlabel3=QB Rating

Jon K. Kitna (pronEng|KIT-nuh) (born September 21, 1972 in Tacoma, Washington) is an American football player at the quarterback position in the National Football League for the Detroit Lions. He attended Central Washington University and was quarterback for the Wildcats during their 1995 NAIA National Football Championship season.


He attended Central Washington University and was quarterback for the Wildcats from 1992-1995. In 1995 the Wildcats won the NAIA National Football Championship with Kitna as their quarterback.

Professional career

Barcelona Dragons

Kitna was named the World's Most Valuable Player in NFL Europe when he led the Barcelona Dragons to the 1997 World Bowl Championship (World Bowl V), winning 38-24 over the Rhein Fire.

eattle Seahawks

Kitna was originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Seattle Seahawks. He served as a backup to Warren Moon in 1997 and 1998, but started the final five games of the 1998 season. Then, in 1999, he started 15 games for the Seahawks, leading them to a 9-7 record (Kitna going 8-7 in games started) and winning the AFC Western Division Championship. Seattle would lose a Wild Card Game to the Miami Dolphins which is noteworthy as the final game played in the Seattle Kingdome.

In 2000, Kitna opened the season with a 4 INT performance against the Miami Dolphins which opened the door for Coach Mike Holmgren to start Brock Huard. During that season Kitna and Huard rotated as starting QBs due to injury and benchings. His last win for the Seahawks came on a rain soaked Husky Stadium turf in December of that year beating the AFC Championship Game bound Oakland Raiders on a TD pass to then rookie Darrell Jackson in the final minute of play.

Cincinnati Bengals

In 2001, he signed as an unrestricted free agent with the Cincinnati Bengals.

In 2003, Kitna played every down, and was named the NFL Comeback Player of the Year after throwing for over 3,500 yards and 26 touchdown passes in leading the Bengals to a respectable 8-8 record, the team's first non-losing season since 1996.

Jon Kitna's secondary role with the team was to prepare young quarterback Carson Palmer (the Bengals' #1 draft pick in 2003). It was a role Kitna accepted gracefully. By 2004, Palmer was ready, leading the Bengals to another 8-8 season. Kitna was the backup for Palmer in that season. The two QB's developed a close friendship off the field, particularly because both men are avid golfers.

Kitna was unexpectedly thrust back behind center during the Bengals' AFC Divisional Playoff game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on January 8, 2006. Carson Palmer went down with a knee injury on his second play from scrimmage and Kitna stepped in off the bench and into a relief role. Kitna finished 24-40 for 197 yards with 1 touchdown and 2 interceptions and a fumble as the Bengals fell to the eventual Super Bowl XL champion Pittsburgh Steelers 31-17.

Detroit Lions

On March 14, 2006, Kitna was signed by the Detroit Lions as a Free agent to a 4-year contract. He was expected to compete for the starting QB position with Josh McCown, but coach Rod Marinelli made Kitna the starting quarterback. Kitna played every down for the second time in his career during the 2006 season and finished the season with 4,208 passing yards and 21 touchdowns, but he also threw 22 interceptions and lost 9 fumbles for the 3-13 Lions. His quarterback rating was 79.9 for the 2006 season. Kitna was announced to be the starter and captain for the 2007-2008 season by Lions head coach Rod Marinelli. In March 2007, Jon stated he would be disappointed if the team did not win 10 games in the upcoming season [ [ ESPN - Detroit QB Kitna: Lions will be winners in 2007 - NFL ] ] , and led them to a 6-2 record. From that point on however the Lions season went south, losing all but one game to finish the season 7-9.

After struggling through 4 weeks of the 08' season, Kitna was replaced during the middle of the Lions week 5 loss to the Chicago Bears. Dan Orlovsky was his replacement. [ [|Jon Kitna News] ]

Personal life

Jon has a wife Jennifer and 2 sons Jordon and Jalen. A born-again Christian, Kitna has been very open about his faith, to the point of even once getting fined for wearing a hat with a cross in a post-game press conference, which was later repealed. [ [ NFL backs off fine for cross hat] ] (By NFL rules, players must wear league-approved apparel from official supplier Reebok in pre-game and post-game news conferences.) In 2001 he started the Jon and Jennifer Kitna Eternal Blessings Foundation, supporting various Christian ministries and also a Christian-based ministry at Remann Hall in Tacoma, Washington.


External links

*Jon Kitna [ player profile] at
*Jon Kitna Guarantee []
* [ NFL Europa Bio]

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