Jason Witten reveals the secret Bill Parcells taught him about tight ends
The people began lining up early in the atrium of The Star in Frisco on Thursday.
On the floor below, there was another line of people that filled the star walk, on both sides, leading into the training table area where the news conference to announce Jason Witten's retirement was held.
They all wanted to get a glimpse, a handshake or at the very least a close look at Witten, who after 15 seasons, all with the Cowboys, is leaving the game.
After taking the royalty-like walk to the training table area, a sea of media awaited along with his teammates. The entire Star organization, the hundreds of people who filled the walkways, also joined him for the ceremony.
Witten, owner Jerry Jones and coach Jason Garrett were seated at the front table.
The program began with a video tribute, which included Bill Parcells, Tony Romo and longtime broadcaster Brad Sham.
Afterward, Witten gave a 15-minute speech, clearing his voice a few times and wiping his eyes on a couple of other occasions.
After Witten, Jones and Garrett spoke and the media asked a few questions.
It closed with Jones presenting Witten with a diamond-encrusted football.
"No one has given more of themselves," Jones said.
After a photo session, Witten went out into the audience. He hugged and shook hands with several teammates, including quarterback Dak Prescott, before he and his family departed.
"Jason Witten is the standard as a person and as a football player," Garrett said.
Linebacker Sean Lee praised Witten and the how the ceremony was conducted.
"It’s perfect for a guy like that," said linebacker Sean Lee. "He’s done so much for this organization, for his teammates and what was expressed up there, that’s what he’s about, the team. He always made it about the team, about mentoring, about trying to win, and he deserves every part of this.”
A quick glimpse to the right was a monitor that was replaying five quotes from Witten.
One particularly stood out.
"We are defined by what we do. How we play. How we carry ourselves. Our swag. Eventually, they are going to submit. That's the way we do it." Jason Witten. June 14, 2017.
And that's the way he did it.