IRVING The Cowboys and Thanksgiving go hand-in-hand a day and a game that's helped make the team's blue star iconic.

'[There's] nothing like playing on Thanksgiving,' said Dallas tight end Jason Witten. 'Every kid and I'm sure growing up I was no different, that's what you love your family eats and you watch the Cowboys play.'

Preparing for the game is tricky, though. On short weeks like this, Mondays become Wednesdays and Wednesdays become Saturdays.

'You got to get your mind right for that, and understand this game is going to be here in a minute... so get ready to go,' said head coach Jason Garrett.

For veterans who play high-impact positions, like linebacker Ernie Sims, the physical preparation is all-consuming.

'I'm doing everything possible... massages, the chiropractor, acupuncture, hyperbaric treatment... I'm going to do everything possible,' Sims said. 'I'm a throw everything at myself to get my body comfortable.'

For quarterback Tony Romo, the preparation is more mental than physical. He spent part of the flight home after the Giants win studying to try and get the most of this week's walk-throughs.

'I think the most important thing is, you got to see the looks... take 'em through the looks, so people are going to communicate the right way when it comes to the game,' Romo said.

Whatever Romo's doing on these short weeks, its working.

He's 5-and-1 on Thanksgiving Day, averaging 301 passing yards a game. He's thrown 17 touchdowns and just 6 interceptions on Thanksgiving.

And his Thanksgiving Day quarterback rating of 106.4 is the highest of any Cowboys quarterback in team history.

A little football food for thought when you're gathered around the table (and the TV) on Turkey Day.


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