Jason Witten admits Dallas Cowboys face an uphill battle for play-off spot

Jason Witten believes the Cowboys need to produce a near-perfect finish to the regular season

Jason Witten believes the Dallas Cowboys need to produce a near-perfect finish to the regular season if they are to secure their place in the play-offs.

Dallas take on the Los Angeles Chargers, live on Sky Sports Main Event, in their traditional Thanksgiving Day fixture and Witten knows anything other than a victory on Thursday will severely dent his side’s chances of reaching the postseason.

“We’re a 5-5 team in the middle of December. Our margin is tighter – we need to essentially run the table or go close to that,” he said.

“That shouldn’t mean that we panic or get frustrated, it just means you have to understand where you are at.

“Our destiny is still out there but you have to go and take it. There has got to be mental toughness, fight and the togetherness that comes with that shared commitment.

“We have to get mentality ready, physically give ourselves rest and go out there and play our best football.”

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Dallas recently suffered back-to-back defeats to the Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles, who currently lead the NFC East by four games ahead of the Cowboys.

Witten, who is now into his 15th year with Dallas, believes the current crop of players has the character needed to go on a much-needed run of wins late in the regular season.

See how the Dallas Cowboys are preparing for a Thanksgiving test against the Los Angeles Chargers

“Nobody said it was going to be easy – we knew it was going to be a challenge,” said the tight end. “In this league, you see teams that fight through it and are able to play well down the stretch.

“They don’t care what happened in the middle of September or December, it is about what you can do moving forward.

“I’ve been a part of teams that have been in similar situations and come together and made a run, and I’ve also been on the other end of it.

“I just try to get out in front of it as a veteran and share my experience with those guys.”

Witten is also relishing the opportunity to play in front of his home support in Dallas on Thanksgiving Day.

Get set for Thanksgiving Day football on Sky Sports as the Detroit Lions host the Minnesota Vikings, the Los Angeles Chargers roll into Dallas to take on the Cowboys and the Washington Redskins entertain the New York Giants

“It does mean more here in the [Dallas-Fort Worth] metroplex just because there is so much pride in representing our country on Thanksgiving,” said Witten.

“We have the greatest fans in the world, all over the place, but especially here in Dallas. They are extremely loyal and passionate and have high expectations and high standards.

“Their support has been unwavering over the years. It is a great time for them to rally behind us on this great holiday.”