In June 2011, Dallas Cowboys Star Magazine decided to count down the best of the best, the top 25 plays in franchise history. Obviously, this wasn't the easiest of tasks, but some 30,000-plus words later, we feel pretty good about the results. Now here in a 25-part summer series, we share our list for one and all. Without further ado, we continue with No. 20, and a snippet from the Dallas Cowboys Star Magazine story:
20) A Display of Toughness, Nov. 4, 2007:
Outside of possibly catching the game-winning touchdown in a Super Bowl, the enduring image of Jason Witten's career shall forever be of him running down the field against the Philadelphia Eagles in 2007 without his helmet.
The Cowboys were already leading, 35-17, in the fourth quarter, and while it's almost impossible to tell for certain, replays appear to show that as Witten caught the ball at the 35-yard line, Quintin Mikell connected on a helmet-to-helmet hit that loosened Witten's chinstrap a nanosecond before William James' hand knocked the helmet off entirely. Somehow, this combination wasn't enough to take tight end down, though, as he spun around from the original blow and kept on running toward the near sideline and another 30 yards downfield, to the 6-yard line.
"I've always liked him," Pro Football Hall of Famer John Madden told a national audience on NBC, "but now I like him more than ever because he's a blocker, he's a tough guy. And then to get hit and lose your hat, and keep running without your hat, and he took a real blow he took to his helmet, head-to-head, and he keeps running and he's looking to the outside, he's looking behind him. When you can do that, you're a tough football player."