Tight end Jason Witten has played through a ruptured spleen and with a broken jaw. So why would anyone two sprained ankles and a sprained knee to keep him out of the lineup this week?
“You’re going to jinx me now. Don’t jinx me,” Witten said with a chuckle. “Really, I think I’ve been fortunate that it hasn’t been anything. I mean the spleen maybe was a little bit different. But other than that, there are things you can work through.
“Look, I love playing, and I would expect my teammates to do the same thing. Get out there. It’s a great opportunity in front of us, where we are right now. These are games we need to win. That’s the approach we need to have; that’s the approach I have, and I think everyone else has.”
Witten was limited in practice again Thursday, but his streaks of consecutive games played and starts in a row likely aren’t in danger. He has missed only one game in his career. He sat out only a game against the Eagles as a rookie in 2003 after his jaw was wired shut.
He has played in 189 consecutive games with 133 starts in a row.
133 Consecutive starts for Jason Witten
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones got emotional talking about Witten’s toughness, saying Witten won’t be deterred “with common pain.”
“Being in this situation before -- and fortunately not very often, but it has come up -- the focus is not about being a tough guy,” Witten said. “It’s about going out there and playing and playing well. That’s what I’ve been trying to do all week is get myself in position. That’s what I’m anticipating doing.”
The Cowboys added two players to the injury report. Defensive ends Jeremy Mincey (illness) and Ryan Russell (groin) were limited. Tight end James Hanna (knee) and guard Ron Leary (groin) returned to practice on a limited basis. Linebacker Kyle Wilber (hamstring) remained limited.