The Dallas Cowboys are getting younger at almost every position, with second-year starters at quarterback and running back and a still young Dez Bryant at wide receiver. Add in the Cowboys offensive line that is all in their mid-20s, and this is an NFL team built for the future. However, there is one position that stands out and that is tight end where the Dallas Cowboys just extended 34-year-old Jason Witten to four more years to his contract.

Why a new contract for Jason Witten?

People from outside the Dallas Cowboys organization and fan base might wonder why Jason Witten, who will turn 35 before the 2017 NFL season starts, is worth $29.6 million for four more seasons.

The fact is that his stats is not what is important when it comes to Witten remaining with the Cowboys. Jason doesn't have 1,000 yard receiving seasons anymore and is only the third or fourth option on passing plays now. However, much as he has been his entire career, Witten is a security blanket for the Cowboys quarterback, and with Dak Prescott only having one year of NFL experience, he needs that experienced weapon. Witten is also big and has good hands and can catch those short and mid-level passes to move the chains and make first downs.

The future for Jason Witten and the Dallas Cowboys

2017 was the last year for Jason Witten under his current contract. At the age of 35, he will probably not sign another deal and retire when his contract is up at the age of 40.

In 2017, the Cowboys will continue to play for the last three seasons, running the ball hard first and throwing second. Ezekiel Elliott will get a ton of carries and Jason Witten will do a lot of blocking. When Dak Prescott needs to throw the ball, Witten is there anytime he needs to dump off the pass. This is his new role and Jason has never complained once about it.

Jerry Jones has rewarded Witten with this new contract for the years of loyalty to the Dallas Cowboys and he will retire as one of the best of all time. Here is one other thing for Cowboys fans to watch. Jason Witten ranked seventh all-time in receptions and will pass Tim Brown, Cris Carter, and Marvin Harrison this season to move into fourth place. There is also an outside chance, although slim, that he could pass Tony Gonzalez for the most receptions all-time by an NFL tight end by just averaging 48 receptions a season.