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Nick Harris

How Witten's Career Inspired Luke Schoonmaker 


FRISCO, Texas — It's been a season of change for second-round pick Luke Schoonmaker since being drafted last month, and this week was no different.

Despite most of the rookie class having already visited the facilities during a 30-visit, Schoonmaker's introduction to his new home came when he arrived in town earlier this week to officially begin his career as a Cowboy.

"It's unbelievable, just spectacular," Schoonmaker said. "I'm so fortunate to be here. Already started, so it's exciting. I'm pumped to be here."

Despite growing up as a Patriots fan idolizing Rob Gronkowski, since being drafted by the Cowboys, Schoonmaker has picked up an affinity for what Jason Witten brought to the franchise both on and off the field in hopes that he can add a similar impact to his team.

"I've been watching Witten all the time," Schoonmaker said. "Just him as a player is spectacular, he's a hall of famer, but him as a person, he's a team leader. I've been trying to research and understand his mindset around how he went about leadership."

Schoonmaker has even reached out to Witten about some early advice and is looking forward to hearing back from the new head coach at Liberty Christian High School in Argyle.

"I did reach out to him, I'm waiting to hear back from him," he said. "I think he'd be such a great person to talk to and get a lot of ideas from how he attacked his rookie season."

Much like Witten during his draft process, the main strength for Schoonmaker coming into his rookie season is his ability to run block, but the 6-foot-5, 250-pound tight end still sees a high potential in the pass-catching department in the Dallas offense.

"I ran a lot of crossers at Michigan," he said. "That was kind of my favorite, just being able to expand on that a lot more [in Dallas]. Getting separation and being fast, I love getting open across the field."

As for his immediate contributions, Schoonmaker is looking forward to joining an all-Big Ten tight end room to add even more versatility to what is already a well-rounded group in his eyes.

"I just think as another key component to the tight end room," he said about what he can bring. "We're pretty loaded with guys that can do so many different things. I'll just be in there to do whatever is asked of me."

"It is like a Four Horsemen group. All of them being put in different spots and everyone is playing a lot. It's gonna be fun going in there to be another Horseman and bring what I can to that room."

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