LAS VEGAS (KFDX/KJTL) — After 17 years in the National Football League, tight end Jason Witten intends to retire, according to multiple sources.
ESPN’s Todd Archer reported Witten will sign a one-day contract with the Dallas Cowboys when his contract with the Las Vegas Raiders expires in March and retire as a member of the Cowboys.
Witten, 38, finishes his career with 1,228 catches for 13,046 yards, both good for the second-most among all NFL tight ends in history.
Witten’s 74 touchdowns rank fifth all-time among tight ends.
The statistic that cements Witten’s name among the all-time greats is an NFL record he holds all by himself; most games played by an NFL tight end at 271.
In 17 years in the National Football League, Witten missed a single game in 2003 when he fractured his jaw against the Cardinals.
In 2010, Witten received a concussion and sprained his MCL in back-to-back weeks, yet missed no games.
In 2012, Witten lacerated his spleen during a preseason game but was ready to go when the regular season began.
In 2015, Witten sprained both ankles and his left knee, and still did not miss any games.
Perhaps no moment in his career better encapsulates Witten’s leadership, drive, and toughness than a 2007 road game against the NFC East rival Philadelphia Eagles.
On 2nd and 9, Witten caught a 20-yard pass from his former quarterback Tony Romo.
Witten was met by two Eagles’ defensive backs, one of which drilled Witten in a way that very much could be called a penalty in the modern NFL.
The other defender ripped Witten’s helmet off his head.
Not only did Witten refuse to be tackled, he continued running for 30 more yards as if he’d neither been hit nor lost his helmet.
Moments like that defined Jason Witten’s career as much, if not more so, than the statistics.