Name: Jason Witten
Position: Tight End
Height/Weight - 6-5, 262
Experience - Six seasons
College - Tennessee
Key stat - Witten hasn't missed a single game the last five seasons, and has caught at least 64 passes every year during that span.
Contract Status: Signed through 2012 season
- Five-time Pro Bowler (2004-08) * 2008 Second-Team All-Pro (AP); 2007 First-Team All-Pro (AP) * 2008 Home Depot NFL Neighborhood MVP * 2007 NFL Walter Payton Man of the Year Award finalist * 2007 Cowboys single-season tight end record 96 catches 2008 Impact: Despite being banged-up most of the year with rib, shoulder, knee and ankle problems, Witten led the Cowboys in receptions for the second season in a row, with 81. He caught four touchdown passes, and generally did an admirable job blocking. His name did come up in a distracting December side-story regarding discord between receiver Terrell Owens, Witten and quarterback Tony Romo, however.
Where He Fits: Witten is the Cowboys' most steady, reliable offensive weapon, and figures to be the starting tight end for years to come. No matter what changes take place in the offensive scheme over the off-season, or which players come and go, Witten will remain a vital piece of the game plan in every game.
Josh Ellis: Part of the downside of building such high expectations is that even a great season is seen as somewhat of a letdown if it doesn't top prior results. That's not exactly fair, but it's the reality. Witten caught 15 fewer passes for nearly 200 less yard in 2008 than in '07, but it was still the third-best season of his career, statistically. If he has better luck with nagging injuries in 2009, those numbers could spike again. The Cowboys will put leadership at a premium next season, and Witten should serve as a shining example to his teammates.
Rob Phillips: This might have been Witten's most impressive season considering all the injuries he faced. After Week 1, the guy played hurt every single week and still posted Pro Bowl-worthy numbers. The locker room drama embarrassed and frustrated him because he takes his role as a captain and teammate very seriously. No matter what adjustments are made to the offense next season, Witten will have a significant role because he's generally such a reliable target.