Michael Ausiello
April 02, 2010 AT 08:33 PM EDT

Image Credit: Justin Lubin/NBCWhen the time came for Parenthood to introduce the character of Gaby Moss, an Asperger’s aid that Kristina (Monica Potter) and Adam (Peter Krause) hire to help out with their son, Max, the NBC drama’s boss, Jason Katims, immediately thought of his onetime Friday Night Lights ingénue Minka Kelly.

“On the one hand, she’s charming and easy-going,” says Katims, “but she’s also quietly forceful, which is something this role requires. It’s a tough position to come in and tell anybody, ‘Hey, you’re not doing a good job with your kid.'”

Katims sent Kelly the script and within 24 hours she wanted in. “It was fortuitous that she had an opening in her schedule to do it,” he says of her two-episode arc, which kicks off next Tuesday. “Should we get more seasons of the show and if she’s available, I would love to [bring her back]. We’re waiting to see on both fronts.”

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