Dallas Cowboys

Jason Witten a Hall of Famer? Some pundits (Skip Bayless) don't think so

Watch: Jason Witten gives emotional retirement speech

Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten announces his retirement from the NFL after 15 years in the league.
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Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten announces his retirement from the NFL after 15 years in the league.

Even Jason Witten has to suffer through internet trolls.

The tight end, who is one of the greatest players in Cowboys' history, retired on Tuesday.

And while most people believe he will eventually have his plaque enshrined in the NFL Hall of Fame, several members of the media could not resist the opportunity to cast doubt on Witten's chances.

"I'm tough on the Hall of Fame," FS1 commentator Skip Bayless said. "I think it's getting softer and softer into the Hall of Fame. ... But Jason Witten would not be in my Hall of Fame. My standards are high. Did he change the game? Was he a transcendent player? No. He was a really good. ... There's that 'Hall of Very Good' I talk about. He's in that ' Hall of Very Good.' He played 15 years and missed 1 game. ... That's durability man."

Here is Steven Ruiz from USAToday:

"Witten has put up the volume stats, but he was not a very efficient player during his career. And if we’re putting him in Canton because he stayed healthy and stacked numbers, then you should also consider Matthew Stafford a lock for the Hall of Fame if he keeps up his current pace. Do you? If the answer is no (and it is), then you shouldn’t consider Witten a lock either."

ESPN's Jeff Legwold (who covers the Broncos) believes Witten is "worthy" of the Hall of Fame, but he should have to wait. It should be noted that Legwold covered Broncos tight end Shannon Sharpe, who got in on his fourth try.

Cowboys fans have been showing the icon love and support. Former teammates such as Dez Bryant and Tony Romo, among others, have lauded Witten, too.

Even former Cowboys head coach and notable grump Bill Parcells said of Witten: "He's what pro football is supposed to be about."

The durable tight end leaves the game as the Cowboys' all-time leader in receiving yards (12,448) games played (239) and games started (179). He ranks third in franchise history with 68 receiving touchdowns, trailing only Bryant and Bob Hayes.

His career receptions total ranks fourth in league history (1,152), trailing just Jerry Rice (49ers and Raiders), Tony Gonzalez (Chiefs and Falcons) and Larry Fitzgerald (Cardinals).

There are only eight tight ends who have been inducted – Kellen Winslow, Jackie Smith, Ozzie Newsome, Charlie Sanders, Shannon Sharpe, John Mackey, Mike Ditka and Dave Casper.

Gonzalez is expected to be the next as he’s eligible in 2019. Witten's name is first eligible to be on the ballot in 2023.

After 15 seasons with the Cowboys, tight end Jason Witten is retiring. Take a look back at his franchise and NFL records, and other career milestones.

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