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Cowboys Midsummer Madness, Regional Semifinals: Roger Staubach vs. Jason Witten

The Midsummer Madness regional semifinal round is underway! Today’s Sweet Sixteen match-up features top seed Roger Staubach facing off against four seed Jason Witten. Who will survive and advance to the Elite Eight?

Our regional semifinal round moves to the Paul Tagliabue Regional, and a match-up between two fellows who are poster children for all that being a Cowboy represents: top-seeded Roger Staubach, "Captain America," the leader of the great 70s teams and a model citizen in every conceivable way, versus Jason Witten, "The Senator," whose impressive on-field career has been matched only by his admirable off-the-field demeanor. Which great player and even better man will prevail? Read the bios and comments and hit the poll, good people!

Wanna keep tabs on the state of the bracket or look ahead to future contests? All the Midsummer Madness info you could ever want can be found right here.


Player: Roger Staubach

Position: quarterback

Seed: 1

How he got here: defeated Eugene Lockhart, 671-22; defeated Cliff Harris, 676-23


Name Years Career AV Pro Bowls All-Pro RoH HoF
Roger Thomas Staubach

Bio: A 10th-round "futures" draft pick in the 1964 Draft, Staubach, who attended the Naval Academy, joined the team in 1969 after fulfilling his military commitment. After backing up and sharing time with Craig Morton for two plus seasons, Staubach took over the starting role for good midway through the 1971 season, leading the team to ten straight wins, including its first Super Bowl victory (where he won MVP honors, becoming the first Heisman Trophy winner to be a Super Bowl MVP). Later that decade, "Roger the Dodger" led the Cowboys to a second Super Bowl victory and two other appearances in the Big Game (both agonizing losses to the Steelers).

Staubach had several nicknames; he was was known as "Roger The Dodger" for his scrambling abilities (in his career he made innumerable scrambles to buy time for a receiver to get open, and also carried the ball 410 times for 2,264 yards. Staubach was also known as "Captain America," as quarterback of "America's Team"; from 1971-'79, the Cowboys won an astonishing 95 games with him at the helm, and never won fewer than eight games in a season. And, finally, he was known as "Captain Comeback" due to his penchant for leading the Cowboys to improbable victories. In his career, Staubach led the Cowboys to 23 game-winning drives (15 comebacks) in the fourth quarter, with 17 of those in the final two minutes or in overtime, the most famous of which was the "Hail Mary" pass in a divisional round playoff game against the Vikings in 1975.

Staubach retired as the NFL's highest-rated passer of all time (when we subtract Otto Graham's AAFC numbers); he was the NFL's top-rated passer four separate seasons, each of which he also led the league in adjusted yards per attempt, finished with a .750 career winning percentage, and six Pro Bowl invitations. He played on five Super Bowl teams, four as the primary signal-caller, and twice took home a Lombardi. Staubach was a member of the NFL's All-Decade team for the 1970s, and, in 1999, was ranked 29th on The Sporting News list of the 100 Greatest Football Players, the second-ranked Cowboy behind Bob Lilly. In 2010, a Dallas Morning News poll selected him as the greatest Cowboy of all time. Staubach was inducted into the Cowboys' Ring of Honor in 1983 and elected to the Hall of Fame in 1985.

Member comments:

Member Comment

Roger will get my vote against all comers.

He was, is and always will be my hero. He is worthy to be a hero in ALL senses of the word.

He was a Naval Officer, a great football player, a great husband and father and a great businessman.

Going up against Staubach is like going up against Jesus...

….when the judges are all evangelical pastors.

You don't earn the title of "Captain Comeback" if your team can win without you

Out of all the Captain titles that Roger held, this one was the most important.


Player: Jason Witten

Position: tight end

Seed: 4

How he got here: defeated Tom Rafferty, 890-28; defeated Chuck Howley, 488-208


Name Years Career AV Pro Bowls All-Pro RoH HoF
Christopher Jason Witten

Bio: The Cowboys selected Jason Witten in the third round of the 2003 draft. He played sparingly in his rookie season (notably missing only one game after breaking his jaw, which he had to have wired shut), but exploded the following season, when he caught 87 passes and received the first of his ten Pro Bowl nods (every year from 2004-2014 except 2011). From 2006 on, he has been Tony Romo's safety valve, in which capacity he has become particularly adept on third downs. Along the way, he received All-Pro nominations in 2007 and '10, logged four 1,000+ yard seasons, seven years with at least 79 catches and 57 touchdwns.

For his career, Witten holds Cowboys records for most career receptions, with 943, and most receptions in a single game, with eighteen (against the Giants in 2012). In addition, he holds NFL records for most receptions in a single season by a tight end (110 in 2012); most receptions in a single game by a tight end (the 18 noted above); most consecutive starts by a tight end (131 and counting); and is second to Tony Gonzalez in receptions and receiving yards by a tight end. In addition, Witten currently stands thirteenth in career receptions in NFL history, with 943 (nine more will push him past Andre Reed into twelfth place), and is only the third tight end in NFL history with 10,000 career receiving yards.

In 2009, Witten was named to the CBS  All-Iron team. In 2010, after hauling in 94 receptions for 1,002 yards and nine touchdowns, he was named the NFL tight end of the Year by the NFL Alumni Association. Plus, he's a tough cookie: in 2012, he suffered a lacerated spleen in a preseason game against the Raiders but didn't miss any regular season games. Speaking of toughness, The Senator had the greatest helmetless run ever, and on Monday Night Football against the Eagles no less. To top it off, he is a model citizen and teammate and was a deserving 2012 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award winner, the second time he was nominated for the award

Member comments:

Member Comment

Jason Witten, maybe he is the 1st player that should ever go into the Ring of Honor while still playing.

He is the epitome of what a team wants in a player, what the NFL wants in a role model and what a family wants in a father.

Jason Witten is chief receiving nemesis

Let’s begin with receptions.

In the past two seasons, Jason Witten has emerged as the number one franchise nemesis for both Washington and New York, eliminating Art Monk and Michael Irvin, respectively, from the tops of those record books.

Witten was already the top guy against the Eagles, making him the career leader in receptions against each of the Cowboys three NFC East rivals.

Jasonness is next to Godliness

Alright, BTBers, which man advances to the Elite Eight?

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