How Jason Witten copes with the offseason

IRVING, Texas – The Dallas Cowboys’ season ended when they lost their regular season finale to the Philadelphia Eagles on Dec. 29, 2013.

For some players the work did not end. Injured players continue to rehab at Valley Ranch on an almost daily basis. Tyron Smith, Dez Bryant, Jason Witten, Jason Hatcher and DeMarco Murray played in the Pro Bowl, so they continued to work out.

While the official offseason program does not start until April 21, most players continue to work out after the season to remain in some kind of shape.

Football players lead a largely regimented life. They know what they will be doing from April until the middle of June in the offseason program. Once training camp rolls around in late July, they have a mapped out schedule through the rest of the regular season.

When that season ends, they have to adjust to real life.

NFL Nation Arizona Cardinals reporter Josh Weinfuss put together this Hot Read on how players adjust to an offseason. In it Witten offered up what it is like for him.

“It takes a little time to adjust anytime you stop," Witten said. "You get in a routine and you're working so hard at it that, anytime you stop, it takes a little bit of an adjustment. It takes a few weeks to get back to normal and get healed up and kind of rejuvenate yourself to get ready to go again.

"Obviously physically, you definitely can need that time to let your body heal up. But mentally, it's just as important to decompress and let everything settle in and learn from it and move forward. It takes a little time to process so you can move forward."