Rams receiver Daniel Rodriguez stands only 5 foot 8 and weighs only 180 pounds, but he can claim the title of the toughest player on either team.
While serving a 12-month tour in Afghanistan, Rodriguez was one of 60 Americans who fought in the Battle of Kamdesh on Oct. 3, 2009. Eight Americans died and 22 others were wounded, including Rodriguez, who took bullet fragments in his shoulder and shrapnel in his neck and legs.
He continued fighting 12 more hours and won a Purple Heart and the Bronze Star Medal with Valor Device.
Five months later, Rodriguez met Cowboys tight end Jason Witten during an NFL USO tour.
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Rodriguez surprised Witten on Monday, with the tight end having no idea the Army vet was trying to make it in the NFL after walking on at Clemson.
“He had a picture, and he brought it, and he wanted to give it to me,” Witten said. “He thought I’d like it. I mean that wasn’t what I was thinking when I came out to practice you know? It put a smile on my face and I thought, ‘Wow! This guy is pretty special.’”
Charean Williams, 817-390-7760