Jason Witten Officially Retiring to Join MNF Booth

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Witten leaves the Cowboys after 15 seasons as the team's starting tight end.

Witten, who turns 36 on Sunday, liked to do his talking on the field.

The article cites reports from Mike Garafolo and Ian Rapoport of ESPN, who say Witten informed Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones, and coach Jason Garret.

Following his tenure with the Vols, Witten was selected in the third round of the 2003 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys.

The ultra-durable Witten only missed a single game in his 15 seasons. He made 11 Pro Bowls, and his 1,152 receptions ranks fourth all-time behind wide receivers Jerry Rice and Larry Fitzgerald and fellow tight end Tony Gonzalez. He also finished first in Cowboys history in career receptions (leading Michael Irvin by 452 grabs) and receiving yards (12,448, the second most of a tight end in National Football League history), and third in receiving touchdowns with 68.

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Witten will now become the third former Cowboys player to work as a lead network broadcast analyst, joining former QBS Troy Aikman (Fox) and Tony Romo (CBS). "It's a unique opportunity to join a good team, and to be able to partner with a lot of guys that share that same passion, and a huge platform to share our love for this great game".

Ultimately, he opted to retire to start a new chapter in his life after one of the most successful runs in Cowboys history.

"I never wanted this day to come. That is certainly what I tried my best to do during my time with this organization". "Other players might have been more talented, but no one would ever outwork me". He trails Dez Bryant, who was released last month with 73 TDs, and Hall of Famer Bob Hayes (71). Among the tight ends left behind, only one has a catch in a regular-season game: Geoff Swaim with nine over three seasons.

Though Witten had five touchdowns last season, his receptions (63) and his yardage (560) were both the lowest since his rookie season.

"There's an old saying in pro football: The circus doesn't stay in town forever", Witten said, as quoted on NFL.com. "Witten is the standard as a football player and a person... until the end of time".

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