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TE Jason Witten Signs 4-Year Extension With Cowboys

, “Gold Jacket Witt” as nicknamed him in 2016, will indeed be getting a gold jacket someday in Canton, OH at the Pro Football . We're talking about a who is the all-time leader in receptions (1,089), soon to be yards (he needs 17 more to pass ), and soon to be games played (he needs 2 more to pass Ed “Too Tall” Jones) in franchise . Did I mention that we're talking about a tight end here?! Jason Witten, in all his glory, has officially signed a four-year extension with the .

Drafted in the 3rd Round (69th Overall) of the 2003 out of Tennessee, Jason Witten has been making a name for himself while wearing a Dallas Cowboys uniform since the beginning. He's seen and been through all of the changes at both and , seeing his fate end as far as the as many as three times (2007, 2014, and 2016).

The Cowboys enter the seemingly in need of an “heir apparent” to Jason Witten. Last year's 6th Round selection Rico Gathers thinks that he may be up to that task, but Jason Witten a indicates that he's not as near as we all thought when last season ended.

Jason Witten
Jason Witten can still make plays. On October 30th, 2016 against the he caught the game-winner from QB to keep the Cowboys momentum moving.

Of course the Cowboys will still likely address the position of tight end in the draft as behind Witten they have Gathers, coming off of , and (who was recently injured and will be out until Training Camp). Whatever the case it surely is some peace of mind for Dallas that Jason Witten plans on sticking around for a little bit longer.

The extension that Jason Witten just signed with the Cowboys seems like a move purely intentioned to allow him to finish his career with the Cowboys as opposed to one made to gain cap space. Witten's cap number for 2017 is $12.2M (courtesy of OverTheCap.com) and his new extension does nothing to change that. Of course, the Cowboys can restructure and “kick the can down the road” with money as we've seen them do this season with Tyron Smith and Travis Frederick, but for now they'd be wise to sit.

Considering the what-looks-like-a-tumultuous end to the era in Dallas, the Cowboys are likely doing everything possible to ensure that Jason Witten's exit from is far more graceful. Maybe at some point it'll also benefit them financially, but today all it's about is keeping Jason Witten around the Dallas Cowboys longer. That's something we can all get on board with.

RJ Ochoa
RJ Ochoahttp://OchoLive.com
I like long walks on the beach, mystery novels, no just kidding those suck. The Dallas Cowboys were put on this earth for us all to love and appreciate. I do that 24/7/365. I also love chicken parmesan. Let's roll. @RJOchoa if you wanna shout!

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Russ_Te

Why not set it up for 30 years with $300 million signing bonus… ;^)

Hopefully this is not one of those deals like Romo got, that wrecks your cap after he’s off the team.

Positives: Very durable producer who never relied on speed

Negatives: Everybody reaches the year where they don’t have it anymore

Gathers is the kind of low-cost / high-upside project that the Cowboys need all over the team this year in camp – DL, Secondary, OL, return guys who might pressure Whitehead, etc

John Williams

Maybe this is a sign that the Dallas Cowboys believe that Rico Gathers has what it takes to be the heir at TE. Witten won’t be around forever, but this extension gives them time to continue to develop Rico and see what they have with him.

Likely he’ll compete for a roster spot this year with Hanna and Swaim, and then begin competing for snaps during the season. I would bet as the season progresses that we’ll see him more and more.

There’s too much upside with Rico if he can figure out the blocking and nuanced route running side of the game.

Thankfully, we don’t need him to be an underneath security blanket at the moment, we have Cole Beasley and Ezekiel Elliott for that.

Once Gathers gets into games, he can be that TE that goes up the seem or challenges the Cover Two with corner and post routes.

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