The 10-time Pro Bowl tight end, Jason Witten, 34, signed a 4-year contract extension earlier today. However, in his eyes not much has changed.
“I signed it, and it was back to work,” Witten told dallascowboys.com. “This is everything that I want. My feet are planted firmly here. I’m looking forward to what lies ahead.” After Witten signed a five-year, $37 million contract extension prior to the 2011 season, the tight end tweeted, “I am blessed to say I will retire a Cowboy!”
Head Coach, Jason Garrett, also spoke to the media. “He represents everything we want in a football player and he continues to get better and better and better. It’s an amazing thing to say, a guy who’s played as long as he has. But he had an outstanding year for us this past year, he embraces any role we give him, and we love having him on our football team and we love having him as a leader on our team… Certainly the cap relief was something, but also making sure Jason Witten is with us as we go forward. He’s the guy who represents what we want in our team.”
The extension will not alter Witten’s $7.4 million salary, nor his $12.6 million salary cap for 2017, which were part of his previous deal from 2011. Witten’s four-year extension tops is worth $29.6 million. It also does not include any additional guaranteed money. He was entering the final year of his previous deal and was set to make $7.4 million in base salary and count $12.262 million against the salary cap. Witten’s new deal extends the Cowboys a crucial $4 million in cap space. Executive Vice President, Stephen Jones, says the team is “more than likely” to take advantage of the additional cap flexibility.
“Hey, if I’m betting on anybody to do it,” Jones said, “I’m betting on Witten.”
Jason Witten is one of the greatest Dallas Cowboys to ever lace up a pair of cleats. He is also one of the greatest NFL players to ever play. Witten is set to tie Ed “Too Tall” Jones, Bill Bates, and Mark Tuinei as the longest-tenured Cowboys ever entering his 15th NFL season in 2017. He will also elapse Jones for the franchise record for career games played early in the season, in Week 2, at 224 games. He needs only 17 more receiving yards to break Michael Irvin’s team record of 11,904. Witten will also eventually rise to fourth in NFL history in catches, as he only needs 14 receptions. Only Tony Gonzalez has more catches from the tight end position in NFL history and Witten sits 236 catches behind the mark, which is attainable if he plays out the remainder of his extension.
Witten’s contact isn’t necessarily indicative of how many more years he will play, it is more of a situation where he does not want to be in contract years and weigh the burden of a contract year. He has said numerous times that he has too much respect for the game to continue playing if he feels he is not producing at a high level. Regardless of what he does, Jason Witten is unquestionably of the the greatest to ever play as well as a first ballet Hall of Famer.
Published by: Nicco Vocaturo