The Dallas Cowboys lost a heart-breaker to the New York Giants in Arlington, TX on Sunday afternoon. In a game of tremendous ups and downs, it was a last second game-winning touchdown catch, that was called back by officials because Dez Bryant’s fingers were out of bounds, that decided the outcome.
The game started with what could be argued as the Cowboys’ worst start of the season. Quarterback Tony Romo was intercepted twice in the first quarter which led to an early 13-0 Giant’s lead. Bryant ended the quarter with a fumble on a punt return. The start was very reminiscent of their previous game against the Seattle Seahawks back in Week Two.
Early in the second quarter, New York converted that turnover into a 26 yard Lawrence Tynes field goal. On the Cowboys following offensive possession, Giant’s defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul intercepted Romo for a touchdown, making the score 23-0, New York.
The Cowboys first break came when Dallas cornerback Morris Claiborne recovered an Ahmad Bradshaw fumble. Unfortunately, the Cowboys offense was unable to take advantage of the turnover. Romo passes were off and he seemed out of sync with his receivers early on.
On their next offensive possession, Dallas was able to drive the ball down the field and get in the endzone. Felix Jones capped the drive with a four yard touchdown run. After a Giant’s three and out and a 56 yard pass play to an open Dez Bryant, the Cowboys ended the second quarter with a 51 yard Dan Bailey field goal. The score at halftime was 23-10, Giants.
The Cowboys’ first drive of the second half lead to a Romo roll-out one yard rushing score on fourth down to make the score 23-17, New York. Following a Brandon Carr pass deflection, the Giant’s offense again went three and out.
During the following drive by Dallas, Romo would surpass Roger Staubach for second on the Cowboys all-time passing leader list. He would also find tight end John Phillips in the endzone for the one yard touchdown, giving Dallas the lead 24-23.
Near the end of the third quarter, Dallas safety Danny McCray would intercept Giant’s quarterback Eli Manning’s pass to Victor Cruz. Safety Gerald Sensabaugh was responsible for the hit that knocked the ball loose. Unfortunately, Dallas offense failed to convert the turnover into points once again, this time going three and out.
The Cowboys started the fourth quarter by punting to the Giants. In turn, New York was able to get another field goal after a 29 reception by Giant’s wideout Hakeem Nicks. New York was back in front, 26-24.
A fumble by Felix Jones on the next drive lead to another Giant’s field goal extending the lead 29-24 with 3:31 left in the fourth quarter.
An amazing one handed catch by tight end Jason Witten and a Dez Bryant drop took the Cowboys into the two minute warning. After a pass interference call was taken back by the officials involving Cowboys’ wideout Kevin Ogletree, a desperately scrambling Romo was once again intercepted by Giant’s safety Stevie Brown.
The Dallas defense gave themselves one more chance to win by making the New York offense go three and out and using all their timeouts. The Cowboys offense was able to drive to the Giant’s 27. Needing a touchdown to win, Romo would find Bryant in the endzone with six second left in the game. Called a touchdown on the field, official replay revealed Bryant’s fingers touched the out of bounds line in the back of the endzone first. They then reversed the call and placed 10 seconds on the play clock. Romo attempted a slant pass to Austin, which was thrown too high leaving a mere second on the clock. Finally, Romo would once again throw high and ended the game tossing it out of the endzone.
Romo ended the game throwing for a total of 437 yards on an amazing 36 of 62 passes. He also recorded four interceptions and one touchdown. He rushed for a score as well.
Tight end Jason Witten had a career day recording 18 receptions for 167 yards. Miles Austin had 9 catches for 133 yards. Bryant had five receptions for 110 yards.
Manning ended the day going 15 of 29 for 192 yards and one interception. The Dallas defense held New York without a touchdown reception. The Giant’s biggest offensive weapon was kicker Lawrence Tynes, who hit five field goals.
It was a terrible day for Felix Jones. Despite scoring a touchdown, Jones gained a measly 19 yards on 13 rushing attempts. He also fumbled the ball that gave the Giant’s a five point lead.
The Cowboys committed six turnovers. They fumbled the ball four times, losing two. Despite this, Dallas had a total of 434 net yards compared to New York’s 293. The Cowboys also lead in time of possession with 32:18 versus 27:42.
The Giants now take a commanding lead in the NFC East at 6-2. The Philadelphia Eagles and the Cowboys both drop to 3-4. The Washington Redskins sit at the bottom at 3-5.
Dallas will now travel to Atlanta to face the undefeated Falcons next Sunday night.