In todays NFL, tight ends are becoming a vital part to offenses around the league. Compared to tight ends of the past, tight ends of the present are now becoming threats down the field and in the end zone. The majority of them are freakish athletes that are built like lineman, but fast enough to out run safeties and linebackers. The big stud blocking tight end with less then superb catching ability and speed is now becoming a thing of the past. In todays NFL guys like Vernon Davis, Rob Gronkowski, and Jimmy Graham are prime examples of what teams around the league are looking for. While guys like Tony Gonzales, Jason Witten, and Antonio Gates are now being left behind.
We all know Witten, Gates, and Gonzales all have had hall of fame careers so far, and are still considered elite tight ends in the NFL, but there comes a time in age where your body starts slowing down and the speed of the game catches up to you. Players around the league are only getting younger and faster, it’s only a matter of time until father time catches up with Witten.
Jason Witten has been the best tight end the Dallas Cowboys have had in a while. Witten has produced as a top tier tight end year in and year out and hasn’t showed any signs of fatigue. That’s great, but everyone knows that unless you’re a quarterback once your age hits 30 your performance starts declining. Jason Witten has showed little to no decline in the past years but its very possible that we will start seeing him slow down very soon.
So what happens if Witten loses his spark and slows down because of age? Its simple Tony Romo loses his security blanket and his best receiving threat. Witten has bailed out Romo in countless situation and Tony has been able to check it down to Witten in the knick of time. Having a big pass catching tight end like Jason Witten matched up against linebackers is a luxury any quarterback would enjoy. To lose that luxury is the last thing a quarterback would want. So how can the Cowboys try to prepare for a potential decline of performance in Jason Witten; they got to find his replacement before Witten declines.
Just like any other position in the NFL a team always wants to be prepared for a potential loss of a star player on the team. The only way to do that is to develop a player that shows some flashes of greatness, a player that has the potential to be quick on his feet and be prepared when his name is called out. Right now the Cowboys should prepare by drafting or trading for Wittens replacement. At the moment the only other players behind Witten that are worth mentioning are John Phillips and the unproven Rookie out of Oklahoma James Hanna.
The fact is, times running out for Witten that being said he is still performing at a high level and can go toe to toe with any other tight end in the NFL. Unfortunately, there will come a time when Jason Witten will no longer see the production he once had before. So until that time comes lets hope Tony Romo and company find a way to get over their playoff slump and make a run at the Super bowl with Romos number one target at hand, Jason Witten.