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Jason Witten



 Jason Witten

Christopher Jason Witten (born May 6, 1982) is an American football tight end who plays for the Dallas Cowboys of the National Football League. He played college football at the University of Tennessee.

In his first of three years at the University of Tennessee, Witten went from being a defensive end prospect to a record breaking tight end. He posted school records for most receptions (39) and receiving yards (493) [2]

Witten attended Elizabethton High School in Elizabethton, Tennessee.

[edit]Professional career

[edit]2004

In 2004, Witten had 87 catches, eleventh most in history by a tight end and a Cowboys team record for the position, and was selected to the Pro Bowl.

[edit]2005

Witten was named to his second Pro Bowl for his performance in the 2005 season.

[edit]2006

At the end of the 2006 NFL season, Witten became just the tenth tight end in NFL history to post three consecutive seasons with at least 60 receptions. Witten was named to his third Pro Bowl for his performance in the 2006 season.

On July 22, 2006 Witten signed a six-year, $29 million contract extension through 2012. The deal contains $12 million guaranteed, including a $6 million signing bonus and a $6 million option bonus in the second year.[citation needed]

[edit]2007

Witten had a career year during the 2007 NFL season. He set the Cowboys single-season tight end record for receptions in a season with 96, while also becoming only the third tight end in NFL history with 96 or more catches. On December 9, 2007, versus the Detroit Lions, Jason Witten’s 15 receptions tied an NFL record held by Hall of FamerKellen Winslow Sr., for most receptions in a game by a tight end in NFL history. In the 14th game of the year, Witten became the first Dallas tight end ever to gain over 1,000 receiving yards in a season. Witten was also one of the NFL-record 13 Cowboys players selected to the Pro Bowl.[3] Additionally, he made the 2007 All-Pro team along with teammates Terrell Owens and DeMarcus Ware. In the Week 9 game on November 4, while playing at Philadelphia, he made a 53-yard reception after losing his helmet.

Witten was nominated for the 2007 Walter Payton Man of the Year Award, which was won by Jason Taylor.

[edit]2008

Witten made his 400th career reception in the Cowboys’ Thanksgiving Day game against the Seattle Seahawks on November 27, 2008. Witten was named a starter for the 2008 Pro Bowl.

[edit]2009

Jason Witten had another Pro Bowl season, making 94 receptions for 1,030 yards, and 2 touchdowns. He was also given the NFL Iron Man award.[citation needed]

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Witten (left) during an interview with ESPN.

[edit]2010

Witten banged his head on the turf after making a catch in Week 2 against the Chicago Bears. He was forced to miss the rest of the game with a concussion.

In a Week 15 game against the Washington Redskins, Witten became the fastest tight end to make 600 receptions (125 games). He accomplished this with a 10 catch, 140 yard, 1 touchdown day at home. He received his 7th consecutive Pro-Bowl selection when he was named as the starting tight end for the NFC.[4]

At the conclusion of the 2010 season, Jason Witten was named Tight End of the Year by the NFL Alumni Association.[5]

Jason Witten hauled in 94 receptions for 1,002 yards and 9 touchdowns for the 2010 season.

[edit]2011

Jason Witten finished the season with 79 receptions for 942 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns playing in all 16 games. On November 13, 2011, Witten surpassed Ozzie Newsome as the tight end with the third most receptions in NFL history with 663.[6]

[edit]2012

On August 13, 2012, Witten suffered a lacerated spleen in the preseason opener against the Oakland Raiders. Witten is expected to miss the rest of the preseason.[7]

On September 5, 2012, Witten caught 2 passes for 10 yards in the season opening victory over the New York Giants. Witten’s availability for the game was in question due to the spleen injury he suffered during the preseason, but he was active for the game after being medically cleared to play.[8]

On September 16, 2012 against the Seattle Seahawks, Witten caught 4 passes for 58 yards. He finished the game with 702 career receptions to become just the second player in franchise history to reach 700+ catches (Michael Irvin has 750) and the third tight end in NFL history to do so (Tony Gonzalez and Shannon Sharpe are the other two). Witten became the fastest tight end to reach 700 catches, reaching the milestone in 145 games, Gonzalez took 154 games and Sharpe took 178 games. Furthermore, his 58 yard performance gave Witten 7,977 receiving yards for his career passing Jackie Smith for fourth all-time in receiving yards among tight ends.

Witten is just 4 yards shy of passing Ozzie Newsome for third place all-time in receiving yards among tight ends.

[edit]Personal life

Witten resides in Coppell, Texas, located in the Dallas–Fort Worth Metroplex, with his wife, Michelle, an Emergency Room Nurse at Dallas’ Parkland Memorial Hospital,[9]and their sons, C. J. and Cooper.[10]

He recently launched the Jason Witten SCORE Foundation, established in part to provide support and assistance for families and individuals affected by domestic violence. Witten appeared in an NFL/United Way public-service announcement (PSA), stressing the importance of volunteering. The spot was filmed at Witten’s annual free football camp in his hometown of Elizabethton, Tennessee, where more than 1,000 children attended in 2007. Witten also appears in a video on I Am Second in which he talks about his Christian faith.

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