Posted on November 9, 2010 at 5:12 PM
GRAPEVINE, TX - Students at Grapevine Middle School gave Cowboys tight end Jason Witten quite a reception and maybe even a chance to escape all the changes this week at Valley Ranch.
His visit was part of the NFL's Play 60 campaign designed to get youngsters to exercise at least 60-minutes a day. He even provided the school a check of 10-thousand dollars.
Students were allowed to ask him questions, but no one asked him about Monday's coaching change.
The past 24 hours have been anything but normal for Jason Witten and the Dallas Cowboys. Wednesday though, he will turn his attention from working with the Mustangs of Grapevine Middle School, to getting ready for the New York Giants.
“Obviously, this isn't ideal for any of us, including the staff,” Witten says. “I think you've got to be able to move forward. It’s tough. In a lot of ways as a leader you feel disappointed because you feel like you let Wade (Phillips) down. To be in this situation it almost feels surreal.
Witten believes that Cowboys Interim Head Coach Jason Garrett will give the team a spark, and said team owner Jerry Jones' message during a team meeting was to the point.
“His message was brief but direct in the fact that he clearly stated how we're going to get back to being successful and the winning way he talked about,” Witten says. “We need to make decisions to get ourselves there as players.”
Witten hopes a new voice will bring something to the team that Wade Phillips could not deliver.
“I just think some of the habits that he has as far as his leadership, the accountability that he creates and just his mindset of how he goes about the way he wants everybody to raise the bar and play to the standard in which he coaches.” Witten says.
Garrett is no stranger to Witten and has played for him since he became the offensive coordinator three and a half years ago.
He says jobs will be on the line when the team takes the field in New York on Sunday. “No question,” Witten says, “No question.”