Could the Dallas Cowboys draft a tight end early?
Will the Dallas Cowboys opt to find the eventual successor for legendary tight end Jason Witten early on in the 2017 NFL Draft?
Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten is a future Hall of Famer. The franchise’s all-time leader in receptions (1,089) will be entering his 15th season this year. The Cowboys iron man has only missed one game in his entire career.
Witten casts a long shadow. And in that massive shade many other tight end prospects have wilted. But is it now time Dallas secures his eventual successor?
Although certainly not the player he once was, Witten’s production hasn’t waned. Last season, the veteran recorded 69 receptions for 693 yards and three touchdowns. Witten was second on the team in catches. And he’s still capable of getting open when he absolutely has to.
Not just a reliable receiver, Witten is an exceptional blocker is well. His presence was part of the reason the Cowboys had such a successful rushing attack last season. So finding an adequate replacement for such a gritty, complete athlete at the tight end position is no small task.
That’s why one Cowboys insider believes Dallas might consider drafting a rookie tight end very high in the upcoming NFL Draft.
"“I wouldn’t be surprised if they took a tight end at No. 28. I am not sure that O.J. Howard would get to them, but if he’s there he would be hard to pass on.” – Bryan Broaddus, DallasCowboys.com"
We’ve all seen the impact a game-changing tight end like New England Patriot’s Rob Gronkowski can have on a franchise. I’m sure the Cowboys would love to add that element to their already explosive offense.
But Dallas has tried to supplement Witten with a comparable tight end partner before. Names like Gavin Escobar, Martellus Bennett and Anthony Fasano have all failed to find success in his shadow. But with Witten turning 35-years old in May, this time could be different.
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Although the mind is willing, the body is weak. No truer statement could be made in regards to the shelf life of professional athletes. At some point, the Cowboys iron man will start showing signs of rust. An athletic player like the 6-6, 242 pound Alabama tight end O.J. Howard could be a welcomed addition in Dallas beside Witten, learning how to play the game from one of the best to ever take the field.