Not surprisingly, if you’ve followed Jason Witten’s career here in Dallas, the Cowboys’ veteran tight end would rather discuss the upcoming match-up with the Falcons than his place among the greatest pass catchers in the 50-plus-year history of the Dallas Cowboys. It’s a hot topic this week, for obvious reasons--namely, after an 18-catch performance in the loss to the Giants last week, Witten needs just four more to pass Michael Irvin as the franchise’s all-time leader in receptions.
For head coach Jason Garrett, who played with Irvin and has coached Witten both as his offensive coordinator and head coach, the similarities between the two players are abundantly clear.
"Each of those guys is as good a teammate as I've been around, as passionate about this game as I've been around, works as hard at this game as anybody I've ever been around,” Garrett said, per ESPN Dallas. “Really, really well liked, well respected by their teammates, by the opposition. They show up to work every day and they do things the right way.
"They're guys you can point to and say, 'Do things like that guy does it. Watch 82, watch 88. And for the most part, they'll provide you an unbelievable example of how to do things.'"
As for Irvin, he became a lifelong Witten fan when he dropped by Valley Ranch several years ago, and saw the tight end putting in extra work, running routes with Tony Romo--a tableau that reminded the Hall of Fame receiver of his own ad hoc practice sessions with Garrett and Troy Aikman.
"The only two I saw on the football field doing the same things Jason Garrett and I did and Troy Aikman and I did were Tony Romo and Jason Witten," Irvin said. "This is apropos. This is how it's supposed to be. We showed them, so to speak, and our ceiling is their floor. They're going higher. And hopefully some other people are watching them.
"He is my favorite Cowboy right here. Period. I've always told him that because I know how he's been working when nobody else was looking."
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