Jason Witten Is Done With Cowboys, May Join Giants
Jason Witten is done with the Cowboys and may join the Giants.
The 37-year-old tight end is one of nearly 30 free agents Dallas has to deal with this offseason.
To date, team brass has made it clear that its priorities are quarterback Dak Prescott, wide receiver Amari Cooper and some combination of defensive end Robert Quinn, cornerback Byron Jones and either tight end Blake Jarwin or wide receiver Randall Cobb.
Witten, despite his long history with the organization, is somewhere near the bottom of the list.
This past week, Witten expressed a desire to keep playing in the NFL next year – even if it is for someone other than the Cowboys.
“I think I have to be,” he said regarding being open to playing for a different team.
“Obviously, I’d love to finish it out here, but some of those things are not in your control.”
According to Witten, he recently met with new head coach Mike McCarthy, as well as owner Jerry Jones and executive vice president Stephen Jones.
Based on those conversations, he did not come away with any real sense of what the future holds.
Instead, he is pretty much open to anything at this stage.
“We didn’t get into the weeds of my role and what that would look like,” he said of those talks with ownership and management.
This past year, Witten recorded 529 yards and four scores on 63 receptions.
“I still feel like I have something to give,” he said.
“I’ve obviously been on the other side of that in the decision to retire. Yeah, I think coaching is in the future, but I want to play while I can.
“We’ll see where that takes place. Of course I want it to be with the Dallas Cowboys, and I’ll always be a Dallas Cowboy, but I also understand that with all the changes, that I might have to go somewhere else.”
This sentiment is similar to one Witten expressed a few weeks back when confronted with the idea that his Cowboys days may be behind him.
“I just want to exhaust every opportunity to play and obviously try to play in a game like this – the Super Bowl,” he said during Super Bowl week in Miami, Florida.
“I have 16 years in Dallas,” Witten continued.
“You would love to finish it off there. But I also am not naive enough to think – you know, it may need to be somewhere else. That’s how this business works. You have to be open to that idea, for sure.
If another deal with Dallas cannot be worked out, it would not be all that shocking to see Witten land in New York.
The Giants recently retooled their entire coaching staff, much like the Cowboys.
Former New England Patriots special teams coach Joe Judge was installed as head coach, and he went out and hired former Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett to be his offensive coordinator.
Garrett and Witten have always had a very strong, positive relationship.
Unlike Dallas, the Giants do not have an abundance of talent on the offensive side of the ball. Witten would be a natural fit and a nice security blanket for second-year quarterback Daniel Jones in his sophomore campaign.
One way or another, all questions regarding Witten’s future should clear up within the next few weeks. As mid-March’s free agency begins creeping closer, Dallas will be forced to make a decision on whether to retain Witten or let him walk.
As soon as that happens, the Giants will be able to assess his cost and determine if the production Witten brings ultimately justifies his cost.