Jason Witten Suffers Lacerated Spleen

Jason Witten, a tight end for the Dallas Cowboys, has suffered a lacerated spleen, according to a doctor’s diagnosis, and the injury could force him to miss out on the rest of the preseason.

Witten’s injury occurred in the first quarter of Dallas’ preseason opener against Oakland on Monday, following a hit from the Raiders’ linebacker Rolando McClain, reports KOGO. Cowboys coach Jason Garrett stated:

“It’s a very serious injury and we’re really taking this day-by-day. He has to be very still and idle for the next week to 10 days. You won’t see him out on the practice field. We have to make sure he heals as well as possible and as quickly as possible.”

Witten will be out for Saturday’s game against the San Diego chargers as well as next week’s game against the St. Louis Rams. This is just the second injury for the seven-time Pro Bowl selection Jason Witten, whose other major injury was during his rookie season in 2003 when he suffered a broken jaw. That incident caused him to miss out on just one game.

The New York Times reports that the best way for Jason Witten to get better will be for him to stay as inactive as possible because of the seriousness of the injury.

There is still hope that Witten will make Dallas’s season opener on September 5, but doctors will need to reassess the tight end next week “after we’ve had a few days of him not doing anything.” Doctors will determine at that time whether his spleen is healing properly on its own or if the football player will need surgery to repair his spleen.

While Jason Witten’s spleen recovers, John Phillips, a fourth-year player, will likely start in his place, which will also allow rookie James Hanna to get some more work.