SI.com 2003 NFL Draft 2003 NFL Draft


Grading System
JASON WITTEN
Jason Witten - TE Position: TE
Class: Underclassman
School: Tennessee
Conference: SEC
Ht., Wt.: 6'6, 264
40 Time: 4.75
Grade: 4.22

Selected by Dallas Cowboys
Round 3, pick 5 (69 overall)
BIO: All-Conference selection last season after setting a Tennessee single season records for receptions by a tight end with 39, receiving yards with 493, while also catching five touchdown passes. Started two games as a sophomore posting 28-293-2. Two way player as a true freshman catching a single pass while also accumulating five tackles at defensive end.

POSITIVES: Former defensive lineman who's been a dominant tight end the past two seasons. Fluid releasing off the line of scrimmage, reads the defense and slides into the open spot on the field. Extends his hands catching the ball away from his frame and always working to give the QB a nice target. Displays good eye-hand coordination, looks the pass in and a sure-handed pass catcher. Adjusts well to the errant throw, extends to grab the high ball out of the air and strong running after the catch. Not fast but has a penchant for sneaking it down the field as well as making the big reception during the game's important minutes. Strong blocker who jolts defenders at the point of attack, walls them from the play or moves them off the line on running downs.

NEGATIVES: Not quick off the snap to the point where he is late into his blocks. Lacks footwork and lateral slide in pass protection.

ANALYSIS: Developing into a complete tight end and though not fast, has always come away with the big play. Should move into the starting lineup quickly as a rookie and be productive from the get go.

PROJECTION: Mid First Round


Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

2002 Receiving Statistics
Receptions Receiving Yards Yards Per Reception Touchdowns
39 493 12.64 5

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