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The Valley Ranch Review: Jason Witten is Ranked Number One; Dorsett Discusses the Ground Game

Jason Witten = the number one TE in football? The Sporting News thinks so. They ranked him atop their list going into the '09 season.

Though his 81 receptions for 952 yards and four touchdowns in '08 were considered a bit of a down year, he still has 177 catches the past two seasons. He has missed just one game in six seasons and has a career 11.5 yards per catch average. The departure of Terrell Owens means Witten will be targeted even more in '09, and his blocking ability also will help the running game balance the offense.

They also ranked a couple Cowboys linemen in their Top 10 at their respective positions.

9. Andre Gurode, Cowboys. He made the Pro Bowl last year, but it was based more on reputation than production, like the Titans' Kevin Mawae. Gurode is a physical run blocker, not a finesse player. He'll need to be more productive in '09 than he was in '08 to get the Cowboys back to the playoffs. The measure of that will be the success of their running game between the tackles.

10. Leonard Davis, Cowboys. Like most of the Dallas lineman, Davis is huge (6-6, 355). He's a mauler as a run blocker who physically overpowers his opponents. He's fairly athletic and can do some good things as a move blocker, and he makes excellent use of his hands in pass protection.

More VRR after the jump.


QB Tony Romo missed another golf opportunity by finishing seven-over-par for the HP Byron Nelson Championship.

Some other Cowboys take on the golfing challenge, guys like Roy Williams, DeMarcus Ware, and Patrick Crayton. They will be three of ten Cowboys to play at the  Sharyland Rattlers Golf Tournament on Friday at Palm View Golf Course in McAllen to help raise money for the local high school. Williams took some time to answer questions about this upcoming season.

"We have to get that timing down that we couldn't get because he was hurt for four games and then when he got back I had foot problems," Williams said. "Hopefully this year we are both healthy and we could do what he and T.O. did."


"You listen to the greats like Troy Aikman and Deion Sanders, and they hating on me," Williams said. "It's all good. I respect those guys because they played the game. I don't agree with what they say but I listen to those guys because they know what is going on."


"This is my year to go out there and show what I can do," Williams said. "I can't talk about it. I just have to let my game show."

Emmitt Smith and Tony Dorsett are excited for the Cowboys' three-headed attack at running back. The two greats expressed their thoughts on MB3, Felix and Choice.

Dorsett on Barber and Jones:

"When I watch him play, I've never seen anybody in any sport that has any more passion for what he's doing than Marion Barber," Dorsett said. "I just love to see the guy, but I think he sometimes puts himself at a disadvantage. He takes too many hits in the wrong places and exposes himself.

"Now, Felix Jones. Felix Jooooooones!!! Lemme tell you now. That man right there is the truth. I mean, that's a great change-up for a defense. He's a good-sized kid, he's got great speed and he can take it the distance from anywhere on the field.

E. Smith on Choice:

"He showed that if you give him an opportunity, he'll take full advantage," Emmitt said. "So, Marion and Felix, I've only got one word of advice: Don't get hurt."

We have the day! The Cowboys will report to training camp July 28. Alamodome practices will begin the 29th and run through August 19th.

Who will be competing on Michael Irvin's Fourth and Long Monday night? Former Louisville WR Montrell Jones is one contestant.

Week 15: Giants at Dallas. A man turns up the volume on the game and gets fatally stabbed by his wife! Obviously, there was more to this murder than the game. But, the woman, Kimberly Shanks, admitted that it was that game that drove her to kill her husband.

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