JON KITNA COULD have stayed home and watched this weekend's Eagles-Cowboys game from the couch in his Tacoma, Wash., home.

Instead, it looks as if he will be on the sideline backing up probable starter Kyle Orton on Sunday night.

He also could have cashed his NFL paycheck and used it to add a game room to his family's house.

Instead, Kitna, who last played in the NFL in 2011, will be donating the $53,000 salary he'll be pocketing this week to Lincoln High School in Tacoma, where he is a math teacher and has served as the head football coach for the last 2 years.

Kitna, a 15-year NFL veteran, has Cowboys roots, taking over after Tony Romo broke a collarbone in 2010, starting nine games while going 4-5. He stayed in Dallas the following season and saw action in three games off the bench. So when word came out that Romo was injured last Sunday against the Redskins, Kitna contacted the Cowboys.

"I told Jason if he wants me or somebody to come in and call a play and be able to pull a play off if a bad situation happened, I would be willing to do that," the 41-year-old Kitna told the Dallas Morning News.

Head coach Jason Garrett took a look at three quarterbacks early this week and sent them all home, opting for Kitna sight unseen.

"He said he would run scout team for the high school team and give them a really good look like he gave us great looks when he was here," Garrett said. "So he's a very active guy. He's a mentally tough guy."

The high school team just finished an 8-2 season after going 5-5 in Kitna's first year. The Abes (yep, that's the nickname) are led by Kitna's son, sophomore quarterback Jordan Kitna.

Maybe after such an improvement, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones might have another job to offer Kitna.