"Witten has serious spleen injury". What a soul crushing headline. Jason Witten is in the top five of guys that the Cowboys cannot afford to loose. I know you're saying to yourself right now, "so what, I already knew this, what is the point". Well after I managed to recover from a bout of vomiting I began to look for a bright side.
The first thing to soften the blow was mentioned on the BTB main page:
At least with Witten, you don't have to worry too much about him missing the preseason. He and Tony Romo have their timing down to a science, and you never have to worry about Witten being ready and prepared.
I doubt that Romo is going to have much trouble at all finding Witten when he comes back. The duo have connected for far too many receptions. Also as long as Witten does not have surgery we can hope for him to come back in week one or week two with little lost quality. In my opinion he is the toughest guy on the Cowboys.
The silver lining is that the Cowboys can also make some progress. While John Phillips is currently injured he is expected to come back shortly and with Witten out Phillips can take extra snaps. This gives Phillips, who many proclaimed as the successor of Witten, a chance to connect with Romo and just maybe take over a little bit of the safety blanket gig. Witten is not the youngest spring chicken in the yard and the Cowboys will have to replace him eventually, so just maybe a little first team practice for Phillips will help find a successor.
We also can't forget about James Hanna. He has shown some promise this off-season and with this injury giving him more reps, maybe we can discover his full potential. While Witten really does not need the preseason, these guys do.
Another silver lining could be for Romo. With Witten down Romo will be forced to focus on other candidates such as the earlier mentioned youngsters or perhaps he will focus on connecting with Dez Bryant as a dominant number one. While Witten gets some rest, the Cowboys may have other possibilities open up.
I hate to see Witten go down and I was incredibly unhappy when I saw the news but as long as things continue as reported Witten will be okay. If you consider the silver linings and if Witten does come back soon, the Cowboys may end up becoming stronger because of the injury.